A design created by St. Thomas alumnus Tom Flake when he was a School of Engineering student will be featured in a performance by the Los Angeles-based dance company Diavolo this Saturday at the Ordway in St. Paul.

Jacques Heim, Artistic Director of Diavolo, leads the UST and Macalester dancers through choreography during a 2009 rehearsal. (Photo by Amy C. Miller)

Jacques Heim, artistic director of Diavolo,
leads dancers from St. Thomas and Macalester through
choreography during a 2009 rehearsal. (Photo by Amy C. Miller)

Flake’s design inspired the set for Diavolo’s piece, “Cubicle.” The performance will take place at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 18. A pre-show gathering will feature a discussion on “Relationships in the Constructed World” with Flake, as well as co-director of Body Cartography Olive Beringa, Diavolo artistic director Jacques Heim, and co-founder of Skewed Visions and director of arts, culture and the creative economy for the City of Minneapolis Gülgün Kayim. Purchase tickets online.

Diavolo and the Ordway share a rich history. In spring 2009, a joint endeavor called The Diavolo Project brought together Twin Cities college students and professors, Diavolo and Ordway staff to create new work inspired by the Diavolo company’s aesthetic and intended for performance by a student company.

The collaboration was funded by the Wallace Foundation and was a part of the Ordway’s Campus Connections program, a four-year initiative designed to provide opportunities to connect adult learners with the Ordway and its artists.

The goal of The Diavolo Project was to create an experience that engaged university students in both arts and non-arts related fields using critical and creative thinking, as well as interdisciplinary collaborations. The project combined the work of the St. Thomas School of Engineering and Macalester College dance department, guided by the artistic direction and aesthetic of Diavolo.

Engineering students proposed initial designs for a set piece, received feedback from the company, then modified and finalized their designs. Flake, a sophomore at that time, was the creative mind behind the chosen set piece design, which was then built by St. Thomas engineering students.

For more information visit Ordway.org.

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