|Photo by Yi-Chun Wu|
|Yoshiko Chuma, Chris Cochrane|
Old School, Open Score
Yoshiko Chuma and Rebecca Lazier share an evening at La Mama
By QUINN BATSON
Careful and silly, serious and absurd very different pieces by Rebecca Lazier and Yoshiko Chuma share these qualities, in a shared evening at La Mama. Both carry on traditions of the last fifty years of experimental dance and theater, using improvisation and open score structuring to bemuse and confuse, which gives both pieces charm and edge.
Lazier's There Might Be Others leads with an existential-philosophical piece of auditory humor by Vladan Radovanovic, Voice from the Loudspeaker. The same quality of whimsy appears in small, growing movement and partnerings. "Working in the tradition of open scores, this piece is created in performance. The dancers begin with a collection of movements, tasks, rules, games and contingencies," notes Lazier in the program. Careful, caring interactions seem serious, until they devolve into silly slapping games, which seem sweet until they approach aggression. The ebb and flow of seven excellent performers works really well for two-thirds of the piece, with shifting groupings and activities keeping things curious. The final third reaches a certain lull, by chance or design, and the performance of this evening ends softly, anticlimactically.
|YOSHIKO CHUMA AND REBECCA LAZIER|
|Choreography by: Yoshiko Chuma, Rebecca Lazier.|
Dancers: Rebecca Lazier: Senaz Demirel, Pierre Guilbault, Cori Kresge, Vincent McCloskey, Christopher Ralph, Anna Schön, Tan Temal
Yoshiko Chuma: with Miriam Parker, Rebeca Medina, Ximena Garnica.
Documenter/text, Afghan Hat: Colin Nusbaum.
Live music, Afghan Hat: Chris Cochrane, Christopher McIntyre.
Live video, Afghan Hat: Kit Fitzgerald.
May 15-18, 2014
|Photo by Yi-Chun Wu|
|Cori Kresge, Christopher Ralph, Anna Schön, Tan Temal in "There Might Be Others"|
Yoshiko Chuma goes for drama much more often in π=3.14...How to Deliver an Afghan Hat, and the structure and score are more set, but seriousness morphing into and out of absurdity is a big part of it all. Edginess and aggression are bracing, even approaching scary or disturbing or hilarious, given the activity onstage or audience point of view. Chris Cochrane on guitar provides acoustic chaos for Chuma's wild movement, in interplay likely honed through years of collaboration. The usually calm presence of Miriam Parker provides respite from Chuma storms. She plays "timekeeper" with a stopped clock and "moderator" to circular, multilingual interrogations between Rebecca Medina and Ximena Garcia. Fascinating confusion and beautiful staging keep things riveting for two-thirds of this piece, but like Others, Hat ends in a place closer to a lull, almost arbitrarily. As before, the effect is not necessarily damaging it is mostly odd.
Each half of this shared evening piques enough to want to see more, and each succeeds in making us think a little.
|MAY 24, 2014|
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