By: Hal de Becker



What do Hollywood directors James Whale and Mel Brooks and choreographer Kelly Roth have in common?  The answer in one word is ‘Frankenstein’ - and not just the monster but his bride too.  


Roth’s latest venture into the horror genre is a dance-drama based on Mary Shelley’s novel ‘Frankenstein’ and James Whale’s film ‘Bride of Frankenstein’.  It will have its premier in the College of Southern Nevada’s spring dance concert April 28th and 29th at Nicholas J. Horn Theatre.


Kaylee Hannig will portray the Bride while other key roles reunite dancers from Roth’s earlier and highly successful ‘Dracula’, including Christopher Leggett as the monster, Danny Mendoza as Dr. Frankenstein’s assistant Igor, and Carrie Miles as the doctor’s wife.  Repeating her assignment as costume designer is Cynthia DuFault.   


Group dances are to include a jolly Oktoberfest celebration as well as violent mob action against the monster mostly because he is ‘different’.     


Roth is also expected to address scientific possibilities evoked by the novel.  Some may relate to today’s conflict between medical science and elements opposed to certain procedures on ethical grounds, regardless of their potential benefits.     


As eagerly anticipated as the dance itself is the musical score being composed expressly for it by Thor Ellyk one of Norway’s outstanding film and theater composers.  A performance of it in Norway by the Oslo New Music Ensemble will be recorded to accompany CSN’s performance.


The program will also include another new work by Roth, this one set to Prokofiev’s First String Quartet.  The music will be performed ‘live’ by UNLV’s Graduate String Quartet.


Performance times and ticket information are available at 702-651-5483.


Two musical premieres, Nathan Tanouye’s ‘Las Vegas Suite” with lyrics by Clint Holmes, and Aaron Ramsey’s ‘Archipelago’, will be presented April 30th at the City’s newest venue ‘The Space’.


‘Suite’, a five movement ‘big band’ work, features the Las Vegas Jazz Connection orchestra with vocals performed by Holmes.  Some movements reflect the human side of the City and are aptly titled ‘The Heat, ‘The Hustle’ and ‘The Strip’.  Other sections depict the valley’s natural desert beauty and spaciousness.     


Ramsey, although a native Las Vegan, composes extensively for films throughout Europe as well as the USA – even as near as The Smith Center. 


‘Archipelago’ has a Latin jazz influence perhaps to capture a feel for those chains of islands off the coasts of Chile and Argentina.  


‘The Space’ offers general seating as well as innovative ringside and terrace locations.  It is located at Harmon and Polaris – just a short stroll from the strip.  For more info and reservations call 702-903-1070 or go on line to  .   


UNLV’s dance department performs ‘Expressive Views’ on April 27/28/29/30.  All I’m told about the program is that it “…showcases junior and senior student’s choreography as well as senior solos.”   Ticket info at 702-895-ARTS.