April 12, 2005
Contemporaneo x 6 - Teatro San Martin
I'm ashamed to admit that once again I slipped out at intermission. The level of the performance was much higher than on Saturday, but it was the sort of modern dance - and I hate to use this criticism because it's an awful and unfair one - it was the kind I've seen several times too many. It's not fair to carp about having seen a device one time too many, because even if I've seen it one time too many, the choreographer still may have needed to do it. But when you're trapped seeing yet another dance in unison to Arvö Pärt's "Fratres", you start to care less and less about the choreographer's process.
If I have done my duty as a dance viewer, and there is some sort of reward, I would like it to be special dispensation to never, ever, ever see another dance ever, ever, ever, EVER again to Fratres. It's a gorgeous piece of music and very evocative. And as far as I'm concerned, it's used by lazy choreographers who want the music to do the work for them, and don't want to take the effort to find lesser-known musical pieces and offer them to their audience.
After that, yet another jazz-modern dance, again, primarily in unison that seemed like the main purpose in its creation was to find an excuse to get the women's tits exposed. Both sexes were in white button down shirts reminiscent of school uniforms. At the middle of the piece a new man (possibly the choreographer?) came on to usher in new section. His shirt was unbuttoned, presumably because he was sexually liberated. So everyone else unbuttoned his or her shirts. The men looked like men with their shirts unbuttoned. The women looked embarrassed. Funny how they took their curtain calls with their shirts re-buttoned. At the apex of the piece, all the dancers came forward and stared balefully at the audience. Didn´t that go out with Anna Sokolow, or maybe Bob Fosse? The dance didn't build to that moment; it was just another theatrical device. Things would have looked less like one step after another if the choreographer of both pieces in the first half (Miguel Robles) had been a bit more musically sensitive, both to the Pärt or even the boom-chucka electronic music. The steps looked like they were created entirely from his natural body movement without any consideration of whether, even though that next step might have been logical in terms of a movement phrase, it also made sense for the architecture of the music.
At intermission, I realized I only had so much energy in me from fighting off this cold, and I needed to conserve for doing the stupidest thing possible - going to Palacio.
Posted by Leigh Witchel at April 12, 2005 6:52 PM
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