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‘Avatar’s’ choreographer, and then some (LA Times, Culture Monster)

January 30, 2010

“Avatar” employed innovative technology to set the Na’vi tribe in motion. The 3-D camera used in filming allowed the director to view the dancers within a computer-generated virtual environment, even though they were working on a “performance-capture” set.

The packs visible on the dancers’ legs help capture the motion. The entire uniform — a unitard with computer-reading nodules dispersed throughout — also includes head gear to catch facial expression. But, while on break, the dancers shed the hot, encompassing shells.

Lula Washington’s “Avatar” credit is a felicitous gig as she celebrates her 30th anniversary as a dance maker. Her company, Lula Washington Dance Theatre, launches a strong year-long performance calendar at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday.

In my article in the Sunday’s Arts & Books section, I describe the Lula Washington juggernaut.

Photo: Lula Washington, second from left, with director James Cameron on the set of the movie “Avatar”
Credit: Mark Fellman/Twentieth Century Fox

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