It’s unlikely that when José Limón choreographed “The Winged” in 1966 he had the 200 different species of migratory birds that rely on Utah’s Great Salt Lake at the top of mind. And when Donald McKayle created “I’ve Known Rivers” in 2005, he was inspired by Langston Hughes’ poem “The Negro Speaks of Rivers,” and by Pearl Primus and Janet Collins, not the many river drainages that are being diverted from the Salt Lake. But, what’s wonderful about great art is that it’s timeless—it can conjure many things depending on who is watching and where they come from.
Repertory Dance Theater in “Dancing the Bears Ears” by Zvi Gotheiner. Photograph by Sharon Kain