Author: Clay Evans

‘Fables on Global Warming’: ‘Punk ballerina’ Armitage’s new work comes to Macky Auditorium Oct. 2

BOULDER, Colo. – From Aesop to American Indian culture, telling fables has always been a way to illuminate what it means to be human — in both society and nature.

That makes fables a perfect way explore the consequences of global warming. And that’s just what modern dance master and “punk ballerina” Karole Armitage has done with her latest work, “Fables on Global Warming,” which comes to Macky Auditorium as part of the Artist Series Oct. 2.

“For a long time I’ve wanted to do something on global warming, because it’s such an important topic,” says Armitage, founder and director of New York-based Armitage Gone Dance! “But I wanted to do something emotional, not didactic, not doom-and-gloom; something with an enchanting sense of nature and its beauty, its generosity.”

The new work, which premieres Sept. 24 in Urbana, Ill., blends science with lively, charming props, puppetry, costumes and movement to tell 10 animal fables from ancient Greece, French fabulist de la Fontaine, China, Native America and more.

A troubadour band of extinct North American animals, including the passenger pigeon, the Carolina parakeet and the big thicket hog-nosed skunk, narrate the fables through contemporary lyrics. Dancers morph from animal to animal as they bring Armitage’s choreography to life on stage.

Armitage says the themes and images are accessible to almost any age. Though not created specifically for children, the company has scheduled several children’s performances on its current U.S. tour.

“It’s visually enticing,” she says. “Children will love it.”

Through color, narrative, humor and mesmerizing movement created by one of America’s most innovative choreographers, “Fables on Global Warming” offers a warm, lively vision of hope on a subject too often reduced to dry facts or misleading debate.

“These are sweet little metaphors, loosely linked to global warming. Through metaphor, the audience is offered a vision of how we might change our current course and create enduring bonds with nature,” Armitage says.

Armitage Gone Dance!: Fables on Global Warming

A program of the Artist Series

When: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 2

Where: Macky Auditorium, CU-Boulder campus

Tickets: $14 and up

Box office: or call 303-492-8008, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mon.-Fri