First, to clear up any misunderstandings, Jennifer Tipton will not be performing this weekend at American Dance Institute in Rockville. That is, she won’t be performing onstage. Yet Tipton, a renowned septuagenarian lighting designer, gets top billing in “Necessary Weather,” a collaborative dance piece that’s credited to Dana Reitz, Jennifer Tipton and Sara Rudner.
If you must know, Reitz choreographed the piece (and also dances), Tipton designed the lighting and Rudner is a dancer who was involved in the creative process. But Reitz wishes none of that mattered.
“Everyone has been confused about this since 1992,” she said, sighing after being asked about the credits for about the 100th time since “Necessary Weather” premiered nearly 20 years ago. “But I wanted Jennifer up there, just like I was. I wanted to share ownership of the piece, without spelling out who did what ...
“People aren’t used to that.”
Reitz calls “Necessary Weather” a “radical collaboration.” All because the lighting designer, the choreographer and the performers were in the theater, creating a work of art, at the same time. And they worked on the piece together, for months.