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Reviews

 

The Push/Pull Dynamic 

By Paula Citron “Lost and Found”, “Fidelity’s Edge” Denise Fujiwara, Susie Burpee

DanceWorks, Toronto’s prestigious contemporary dance series, often programs joint concerts that feature shorter works. It is a clever idea on the part of curator Mimi Beck, because it allows for new creations without a choreographer having to self-produce an entire evening.  

 

Shifting Ground, Growing Concepts

Idea-Based Dances at Tangente By Philip Szporer

Tangente’s three-week-long event, Idea-Based Dances (in French the title was Idéodanses), heralds the choreographic methods and tools used during the postmodern Judson Dance Theater movement in New York, as well as by the French non-dance movement from the mid-1990s, both associated with breaking codes of representation, leaving aside movement, and integrating other disciplines into performance.

 

On Top of the World  

By Mary Theresa Kelly “The White Spider” Jennifer Mascall

It is understandable Jennifer Mascall’s imagination was ignited by Heinrich Harrer, one of the 20th century’s most famous European mountain climbers and adventurers.  

 

Also the Light of Laughter and Connection 

By Kaija Pepper “Dark Matters” Crystal Pite, Kidd Pivot

These are the images I keep returning to from Crystal Pite’s “Dark Matters”: a wooden puppet kneeling devoutly; a lighting rig dangling precariously from the flies above the stage, which is in chaos; Jermaine Spivey’s bright split-leg leaps; and Pite’s careful sewing up of Peter Chu’s chest, her slender fingers pushing the (imaginary) needle in and out.  

 

A Meditation on Gender 

By Mary Theresa Kelly “AdamEve/Man-Woman” Alvin Tolentino, Co. Erasga Dance

Tolentino’s new work, “AdamEve/Man-Woman”, is a sixty-minute duet, a long movement poem, and a taut meditation on the body in response to evolving forms of masculinity and femininity.  

 

The Immigrant Experience 

By Kathleen Smith “Displacement” Robert Glumbek, HCA Dance Theatre

“Displacement”, as the title suggests, is an exploration of the immigrant experience. A multimedia concert with choreography by Robert Glumbek, visual elements by Vessna Perunovich and a ravishing score by Christos Hatzis.

 

A Whodunit, Danced 

By Kaija Pepper “Goggles” Tara Cheyenne Friedenberg

What I’d really like to do is share my theory about the murder mystery at the heart of “Goggles”, the solo by Tara Cheyenne Friedenberg that recently premiered at the Vancouver East Cultural Centre’s freshly renovated theatre.  

 

Gauging Presence 

By Philip Szporer “Nuit_Nacht_Notte” Jocelyne Montpetit Danse

Jocelyne Montpetit’s “Nuit_Nacht_Notte” moves at its own pace, harbouring the haunted, brooding sympathies associated with nocturnal apparitions and imaginings.

 

Garden Ballet for Garden City 

By Garth Von Buchholz The Secret Garden and Selected works Ballet Victoria

If you attended a ballet performance that included two Balanchine works, the pas de deux “Belong” from Norbert Vesak’s “What To Do Till The Messiah Comes”, music ranging from Tchaikovsky to Gershwin to Pink Floyd, and the world premiere of a forty-five-minute contemporary ballet with live music on stage, it would probably be a National Ballet of Canada production or the Royal Winnipeg Ballet (RWB). Now imagine that program is being offered by Ballet Victoria.

 

Making Statements 

By Samantha Mehra, Brittany Duggan “Based on Actual Unrelated Events” Meagan O’Shea, Stand Up Dance

A dialogue review of a performance in a very small space. 

 

New Creators on the Montréal Scene 

By Philip Szporer Danses buissonnières – Classe 2009 & “Surface” Floating Seed Productions

Tangente’s annual Danses buissonnières project invites proposals from emerging choreographers – mainly recent graduates of college and university programs. 

 

Two Snaps from the Festival Transatlantique 

By Philip Szporer Maboungou and Muriva  Zab Maboungou, Gibson Muriva

Two welcome evenings of contemporary African dance greeted audiences at the seventh edition of the Transatlantique Festival, co-produced with Montréal arts interculturels.  

 

A Brooding Ethos 

By Holly Harris “Brontë” Gaile Petursson-Hiley, Mouvement/Winnipeg Dance Projects

Desperate lives often speak volumes. Winnipeg choreographer Gaile Petursson-Hiley gave voice to Victorian-era Brontë sisters Emily, Charlotte and Anne whose passionate poetry and windswept novels such as “Wuthering Heights” and “Jane Eyre” inspired her newest full-length dance creation, “Brontë”.  

 

Three Fine Solos in Beautiful Brutish Columbia 

By Kaija Pepper Pulse Claire French, Julie Lebel

Beautiful British Columbia is in shock at the brutal, recently announced cuts by the provincial government to arts funding, projected to be around ninety percent next year. So it was heartening see the buzz at Scotiabank Dance Centre’s Open House on a sunny September 19th, where a full schedule of performances, open rehearsals and classes celebrated the building’s eight years of existence.

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