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    L-R: Dia Dearstyne, Amanda Hinchey, Nellie Rainwater, Kyla Ernst-Alper in Anchors and Ties
    Photo by Ju Hwan Hwang
    L-R: Dia Dearstyne, Amanda Hinchey, Nellie Rainwater, Kyla Ernst-Alper

    Final Trio at Triskelion

    Three choreographers share Anchors and Ties at Triskelion


    Unsettling is necessary, from time to time. Anchors and Ties, an evening shared by three choreographers, in the final month of Triskelion's current location in Williamsburg, unsettled well.

    Choreography by: Nellie Rainwater, Laura Gutierrez, Amanda Hinchey.
    Dancers: Bandy: Anne Bauso, Michelle Mary Dyke, Kierstin Elliott, Kyla Ernst-Alper, Rhea Daniels, Danielle Gonzaba, Mia Orozco, Anne Plessis, Nellie Rainwater, Megan Smith
    Anywhere: Danielle Gonzaba, Laura Gutierrez
    Un/related: Dia Dearstyne, Kyla Ernst-Alper, Amanda Hinchey, Nellie Rainwater
    Triskelion Arts
    May 30 and 31, 2014

    Nellie Rainwater and Kyla Ernst-Alper begin in underwear, lying prone upstage in artfully dim light while a circle of clothes lies closer to the audience. It is beautiful and a little eerie, dark to the point of confusion but sensual, too, as the two begin to move. Both don skirts and shirts to begin more vigorous movement, and both are vigorous movers. There is so much odd, or unsettling, about Rainwater's Bandy, a travelogue. What does the crop-circle of clothes represent? Is is a sacred ring or detritus? How does the Charles Wright poem about being on the road fit? Is this a circular road or is the circle a hole in the road? When a group of 8 dancers, new to the piece and new by age, join the veterans onstage, things just get more interesting. They stand silent like mysterious trees in a breeze, then very gradually begin to fall out and move about. The clothes get mussed and tossed and worn. The newbies get bigger movements, some even approaching the scope of the main duo, but always seem to represent formative youth. The duo do more impressive dancing at the end, but the mystery never clears, and that may be the biggest strength of Bandy.

    Nellie Rainwater and Kyla Ernst-Alper in Anchors and Ties  
    Photo by Ju Hwan Hwang  
    Nellie Rainwater and Kyla Ernst-Alper
    Minimalism and repetition fill Laura Gutierrez' Anywhere but somewhere else, a duet by Danielle Gonzaba and Gutierrez that begins and remains simple and propless. This is an exercise in reduction and expansion; as music loops in ever-smaller pieces, from a line to a phrase, to a word, to a sound, the dancers move in gradually bigger phrases, from slow and standing to quick and big. The relentless audio is both an irritant and a driver, but the dancers feel no compulsion to move relentlessly, or often to move at all. This disconnect is unsettling, even maddening, as both are clearly capable of sparkling movement and the audio almost requires some visual/kinetic relief. The tiny bits of moving the two do are tasty but teasing, like tapas, even as they bust out full, fast moves toward the end. Ultimately it remains an appetite-perking headscratcher, leaving the audience a bit hungry but looking forward to more.

    Kinetic calm and storms of movement return in Amanda Hinchey's Un/related. There is emotional electricity throughout, though, crackling in the air around the often silent bodies of Hinchey, Dia Dearstyne, Kyla Ernst-Alper and Nellie Rainwater. A theme of collapse and concern recurs in much of the early section; one moving dancer spins and strives until losing balance and falling, and the others rush in to check and console. The configurations of concerned and collapsing shift and change so that no one seems to be the focal point for long. Escape and capture (anchors or ties?) become a theme as well, as the tension between comfort and freedom becomes evident. Midway through, amorphous music by Andrew Bird becomes unsettling, putting the charged onstage atmosphere into sonic limbo. Ultimately, it is Hinchey who dances her conflict in bursts of energy as the others fade from the picture. Music and feeling coalesce more toward the end, and Un/related ends solidly but unresolved.

    JUNE 10, 2014

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