Dance connects us: Caleb Teicher

Dancers+Caleb+Teicher+and+Nic+Gareiss+will+be+coming+to+Calvin+Nov.+2%0A, fair use

Dancers Caleb Teicher and Nic Gareiss will be coming to Calvin Nov. 2

“When music is good, we want to move our bodies. I just do so professionally,” says Caleb Teicher, critically acclaimed dancer and choreographer.

Dance is Teicher’s way of connecting with his body. He says dance allows us to feel and become part of music and that the person he is today cannot be separated from the dancer that he is. Understanding and appreciating dance, he asserts, is understanding what it is to be human.

Teicher will be performing for free at Calvin on Nov. 2 at 7 p.m. in the Hoogenboom dance loft with Nic Gareiss, who Teicher calls one of his favorite dancers. The hour-long show will be entirely improvised with no music or recordings in the hopes of making an entirely original performance that connects with the audience. Gareiss’s dance style draws from the percussive dance traditions of the North Atlantic including clogging and slap dancing.

This will not be a normal dance performance, Teicher said. He identified this show as “halfway between a music concert and a dance performance.” The connection to the audience and the rawness of a live, unscripted show promises to provide an experience enjoyable even for those unfamiliar with the world of dance.

Teicher grew up tap-dancing and drumming, and moved to New York at the age of seventeen to pursue his love of dance. There he joined Dorrance Dance, Michelle Dorrance’s famed tap dance company, and rose in popularity and skill.

After five years of dancing for various companies, collecting awards for his work and dancing internationally in “West Side Story,” Teicher had made a name for himself in the world of dance. His style draws heavily from the American jazz tradition and includes influences from tap dance, vernacular jazz and Lindy Hop. His role models come from the same tradition and include Diane Walker and Jimmy Slide.

In 2015, Teicher began his own dance studio, Caleb Teicher and Company. The responsibility of choreographing his own shows, recruiting his own performers, and creating how he pleases has been the most rewarding and challenging aspect of his work, which he says has been completely worth it.

In the short time his company has been around, Teicher has performed with and for big names in big venues, including sharing a bill with Ben Folds and Regina Spektor at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC.

Now 26 years old, Teicher says that waking up every morning with the realization that he gets to create dances and performances for a living feels like a constant reminder that he’s made it.

When not dancing, Teicher enjoys playing jazz piano for fun, going to see multiple shows weekly and rollerblading.

At the beginning of the year, Teicher’s company premiered the show they’ll be touring next year, “More Forever.” He will also be premiering his largest work yet, “Swing 2020,” in New York City next year. This swing-dance inspired performance will feature 12 dancers and a 10-piece band.