Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet

I’ve been a fan of Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet for many years. Their repertoire includes installations which “…bridge the gap between dancer and audience by merging the two in the most literal sense. Audience members are invited to move freely within the same space in which the dancers are performing. The physical elements of light, space, sound, and movement are all here, but experienced through the unpredictable and surprising conditions created by the live performance of the 14-member Cedar Lake company.”

I attended their most recent installation in New York with my camera. They didn’t seem to be discouraging photography, and there were many other photographers there. I shot with only my 50 mm lens at f/1.4. I tried my best to capture the sentience of the dancers both individually and in ensemble settings. Benoit-Swan Pouffer’s expert choreography, the dancers’ skill, and the lighting and sets made this a pleasure.

Even at f/1.4 I had to shoot at ridiculously high ISOs for a shutter speed fast enough to freeze the dancer’s motion at the expense of some noise in the images. Lightroom does a great job at removing luminance noise, though at ISO 3200 there is some subtle color noise that I can’t seem to remove. It doesn’t really affect the images, and it’s eliminated with conversion to black-and-white, which looks very nice in some of the photos. This noise is not visible at the resolution of the images in this post, but it could show up on large prints.

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