A sum of alums
College schoolmates Sharon Mansur and Clare Byrne one a committed improviser, one the author of moving choreographed works see what they can create together.
By JOSHUA TANZER
Few class reunions promise to be as elegant or interesting as the one this weekend that brings college classmates Clare Byrne and Sharon Mansur together at the Brooklyn Arts Exchange. The two dancer-choreographers have known each other since attending Connecticut College, but this will be their first joint performance.
Byrne, who has performed in New York for the past six years in such venues as the Joyce SoHo and the St. Mark's Danspace Project, creates works that combine personal emotions with observations from the outside world. A program of her work at last summer's Fringe Festival included two parts of an exceptionally moving series-in-progress called "The St. Patrick Pageant," part three of which, titled "The Queen Snake," will be performed this weekend.
|SHARON MANSUR AND CLARE BYRNE|
|Includes individual dances: "Looking Down the Fire Lane" and "The Queen Snake" choreographed by Clare Byrne; "Lightfast" and "Sandshifting" by Sharon Mansur|
Dancers: Clare Byrne, Sharon Mansur, Kitty Clark, Donna Bouthillier, Sarah Carlson, Thereza Palazzo, Suzanne Blezard.
|Brooklyn Arts Exchange|
421 Fifth Ave. (at Eighth Street)
Park Slope, Brooklyn
Fri. and Sat., March 24-25, 2000, 8 p.m.
Tickets $12, $6 low-income
Her other piece will be "Looking Down the Fire Lane," which refers to the fire break cut into the woods rather than the reserved lane on a Manhattan avenue. "It really is inspired by my hanging out in the forest and hunting, and seeing how animals behave," Byrne explains. "There are a lot of arrows being pulled out of backs . . . so it's about everybody being wounded. It's also about love, in that way."
Mansur, who moved to New York after several years in Washington, D.C., is production manager at the Brooklyn Arts Exchange in addition to dancing with Sara Rudner and performing her own improvisationally based works. (She was part of the "First Weekends" series reviewed here in October.) One of the pieces, "Lightfast," is a sort of collaboration with the lighting manager. "We have certain looks that we agree on, and then in the performance, he's going to use whatever he wants to and then my job is to stay in the light," she explains. "That's always fun for me because then I don't have any idea what we're going to do."
Finally, Mansur and Byrne will bring their very different styles to a half-improvised, half-choreographed collaboration. A duet section will bring the two dancers together, and each will have an offshoot solo of her own. Byrne is relishing the experience. "We showed it to some friends a few weeks ago, and they said, 'Wow, I feel like a voyeur watching you,' " she laughs.
|MARCH 21, 2000|
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