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    2018-2019 reviews:


    Frances Chiaverini (L) and Marie Doherty in In Flux in Festival Twenty Ten
    Photo by Steven Schreiber
    Frances Chiaverini (L) and Marie Doherty in In Flux

    Werrk and Play,
    in 7-Minute Slices

    Dancenow's Festival Twenty Ten at DTW is
    more diverse than ever


    Deborah Lohse opened Dancenow's Festival Twenty Ten at DTW with nothing but her shorn head and fertile imagination, or did she? Work is credited as choreographed by Jennifer Archibald, Monica Bill Barnes, Brian Brooks, Archie Burnett, David Dorfman, Faye Driscoll, Doug Elkins, Nicholas Leichter, David Parker, Laura Peterson, Jill Sigman, Oliver Steele, Ainsley Vandenbrouke, Kate Weare and Nicole Wolcott, in what can only be an homage to all those who have inspired and influenced her in the process of making this piece. It is a lush mixed bag, with club dancing, a little ballet, some Lohse rubberface mime, and plenty of fun and attitude, to music by Ciara.

    Choreography by: Deborah Lohse, Gregory Dolbashian, Sydney Skybetter, Camille A. Brown, David Parker, Jamal Jackson, Khaleah London, Mana Kawamura, Dusan Tynek, Kyle Abraham.
    Directed by: Tamara Greenfield, Robin Staff, Sydney Skybetter.
    Produced by: Robin Staff.
    Lighting design by: Lauren Parrish.
    Production stage manager: Randi Rivera and Yolanda Royster.
    Dance Theater Workshop
    September 8-11, 2010

    In Flux by The Dash Ensemble/Gregory Dolbashian, is a sensually beautiful duet between Marie Doherty and Frances Chiaverini, full of dramatic tension and soft conflict, in red sidelight with a smoky green back wall and music by Son Lux. Both dancers are delicious to watch, in contact or apart, sliding across the floor or spinning slowly, then quicking a movement in surprising contrast, ultimately flying apart to end the piece.

    This being the mixed bag that 40 choreographers over 4 nights will be, skybetter & associates then gave us pretty, slow and soft, with no apparent drama, in Cold House You Kept. There are moments of soft tenderness but little impact, like being wrapped in a very soft beach towel, carefully.

    Camille A. Brown reprised Good and Grown from her recent Joyce show, in a version that felt tighter and more direct and thus more engaging to watch, possibly due in part to Dancenow's seven-minute time limit. After plenty of quick changes and soft, sharp and fast movement, her gradually collapsing Hindu-god pose felt very right, to end the piece in fading light.

    Khaleah London in Festival Twenty Ten  
    Photo by Steven Schreiber  
    Khaleah London
    David Parker came to play, with Jeffrey Kazin and Nic Petry, in the witty trio T4THREE. The '40s-vintage songs "All I Do is Dream of You" and "Tea for Two" make a perfect excuse to break out some softshoe steps and campy slap-play, all done with rhythmic brilliance, often a capella or self-sung in fragments. The opening of the piece is funny enough, at the sight of a vampy-not-sprightly Parker, an underoverdressed Petry in only pink shortshorts, openbacked white vest and bowtie and a too-cool-to-move-as-fast-as-the-other-two Kazin.

    Jamal Jackson Dance came with too much noise and not enough movement. The Berean Drum Line is a creditable marching band drum line, but what works in a football stadium is overkill in a small theater, and having seen good work from Mr. Jackson in the past, this Mile 21 didn't reach expectations.

    Khaleah London, however, moves superbly in BEING, her solo of waving, folding limbs that zap accents in music and a riffing narration, credited to Dove/Kyles/London. London is fierce and fluid, and breathtakingly precise.

    I may be smitten, but Kawamura the 3rd, aka Mana Kawamura, always rises to the occasion, and this seven-minute version of Cloudburst packs all the weird punch of the longer version, with brilliant musical choices and sound editing giving life and alternate meanings to four puppet-women shoving and manipulating each other and dancing powerfully in brisk, angular sync or solo. Nordic calliope music and singing Japanese children are a couple of the flavors among sounds of thunder and rain.

    Middlegame by Dusan Tynek Dance Theater has most of the silliness and less of the substance he usually brings, in this probably shortened version of four chesspiece people circling a square of chairs and performing an elaborate charade of a game.

    And Kyle Abraham connects in Live!, a wide range of badass, ballet and buffoon, all done with perfect flow and timing, with a few crazyfluid handarm waves for bonus points.

    This was only the opening night of four, but both the narrow time limit and the broad mix of black, asian and caucasian performers are notable, and welcome.

    SEPTEMBER 10, 2010

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