Sac State dance performanceMariaisabel Colmenares, left, Alissa Fowler, and Kristin Marshall rehearse for “Phoenix Rising.” (Sacramento State/Craig Koscho)

“Phoenix Rising,” Sacramento State’s first dance concert of the season, represents a different approach to the University’s dance productions.

Previously, faculty and guest works were presented in a separate dance concert from those showcasing student works. Not this time around.

“We’re trying something new for this year,” says Professor Lorelei Bayne, director of “Phoenix Rising.” “In the first two shows of the dance season, we’re incorporating faculty work, guest artist work, and student works in the same concert.”

Presented by the Theatre and Dance Department’s Sacramento Dance Theatre company, performances are in Solano Hall Dancespace 1010 at 8 p.m. Sept. 13-16, 22 and 23; 6:30 p.m. Sept. 20-21; and 2 p.m. Sept. 17 and 24.

In addition to mixing it up when it comes to choreographers, “Phoenix Rising” will present the kind of variety in dance and music styles that have characterized Sac State concerts.

Part of the University’s Arts Experience, the concert will include English electronica music by the Chemical Brothers, and cellist Zoe Keating. Guest choreographer Raisa Simpson, from San Francisco, has composed her own electronic/percussion music.

Bayne’s award-winning piece, “Birds in a Gilded Cage,” features music by percussionist Tigger Benford and is a re-staging of the work she created in 2012.

“We’re very excited to perform this piece again,” Bayne says. “Inspired by Mulala Yousafzrai, it addresses gender inequality, gender norms, and changing culture.”

The first fall dance concert can be challenging. There are fewer people at the audition since it falls in late June. But one who made it, dancer Kristin Marshall, says she enjoyed rehearsing through the summer.

“It’s actually exciting, because we don’t have a course load yet," Marshall says. "So we get to focus a lot more on developing our choreography.

“We have a little bit more freedom and a little more time without the outside stressors.”

Tickets for the 6:30 p.m. performances are $15 general, $12 students and seniors, and $10 for children. All other performances are $18 general, $15 students and seniors, and $12 for children. Tickets may be purchased at the University Ticket Office, or by calling (916) 278-4323.

For more information on the Theatre and Dance Department’s program and its productions, visit the Department of Theatre and Dance page on the Sac State website or call (916) 278-3569. For media assistance, contact University Communications at (916) 278-6156. - Craig Koscho