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  •  REVIEW: SURFACING

    Surfacing
    Photo by Richard Termine

    Seamless surfaces

    Troika Ranch creates a fluid world of video and movement in their new "Surfacing."

    By QUINN BATSON
    Offoffoff.com

    K.I.S.S. lives. The limitless combinations of video, music and dance made possible for today's choreographers by current technology have put quite a few sensory muddles onstage in recent years, but Troika Ranch has figured out how to juggle different media by sticking to the 'Keep It Simple, S____' mantra. "Surfacing" at Danspace/St. Mark's Church was a dreamily violent piece of beauty, danced well.

      
    SURFACING
    Choreography by: Dawn Stoppiello with the dancers.
    Directed by: Dawn Stoppiello and Mark Coniglio.
    Dancers: Danielle Goldman, Patrick Mueller, Michou Szabo, Sandra Tillett.
    Music by: Mark Coniglio.
    Set design by: David Judelson.
    Costumes by: Wendy Winters.
    Lighting design by: Susan Hamburger.
    Video: Mark Coniglio with Dawn Stoppiello.
     SCHEDULE
    Danspace Project
    St. Mark's Church, 131 E. 10th St.
    May 20-23, 2004

    Simple wedge shapes were the sole props onstage, four as nine-foot projection scrims doubling as tippable graphic elements and one as a wooden launching pad for live video captures. Four dancers, Sandra Tillett, Michou Szabo, Danielle Goldman and Patrick Mueller, took turns spinning off for solos, duets and trios, sometimes dancing with the scrims and sometimes dancing with each other. Beautiful, dreamy video images would periodically float over everything, above the altar in this case, in projections large, slow and high enough not to distract from the dancing below.

    Apart for an overlong lull after the last solo, the pacing and dynamics of "Surfacing" were impressively fluid and effective for the fifty minutes the piece ran. Movement ranged from looping, circling running to whipping, spinning partnerings to group contact work with melt-togethers and slightly disturbed, softly rhythmic slapping bits. There was a lot of hard contact with the floor and launching wedge, especially in a flopping duet between the two men. This was a well matched group, all physical dancers with a good combination of power and suppleness, especially the luscious Sandra Tillett, who moves, as Mike Myers' mother-in-law would put it, "like buttah."


      
    Beautiful, dreamy video images would periodically float over everything.  

      
    Other highlights included a strong duet in red lighting between Tillett and Mueller, some of the strange trio of slapping and slumping between Szabo, Goldman and Tillett, the sensually slow-motion falling video clips in the large projections, and the intriguingly random projected video captures in abstracted black and white on the scrims in various sections throughout the piece.

    The music composition and video design of Mark Coniglio worked with the choreography of Dawn Stoppiello and the lighting design of Susan Hamburger to make "Surfacing" a seamless, dreamy synergy.

    MAY 26, 2004
    OFFOFFOFF.COM • THE GUIDE TO ALTERNATIVE NEW YORK


    Reader comments on Surfacing:

  • Costumes in "Surfacing"   from Suzanne Sommers, Apr 29, 2007

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