44. p o s t : Response of DANCE SALAD FESTIVAL 2017 (PART 2)

I experienced a lot of dance this week–Marie-Agnès Gillot at Menil on Monday, Transitory Sound and Movement Collective’s “Bleeps, Blips, Blops and Blunders aka Where Did She Go?” with the ever phenomenal Alexa Capareda at the Rec Room on Tuesday, Claudia La Rocco’s Lecture “Criticism is Dead. Long Live Criticism” at MATCH through Diverse Works on Wednesday, and ending with two nights of Dance Salad 2017 on Friday and Saturday at the Wortham.

All kinds of emotions, bodies, sounds, situations all week long. And I think I owe it to each different performance to pick up my forgotten practice of writing, a sort of stream of conscious response to dance. I used to do this with more clarity but less determination when I was younger, when poetry was all around me and my creative writing courses at SJC just weren’t cutting it. I admit I was even more influenced to be brave with my creative writing in dance after Claudia La Rocco’s lecture. (I’ve also currently returned to the loving embrace of my favorite Björk album, Vespertine, an endless source of creativity and positive energy into the unknown.)

I’m also a bit frustrated with the general construction of critical writing these days, and how it’s received incorrectly by untrained eyes in high places and placed on a pedestal financially by nearly every news outlet. “Bad review.” “Good review.” Let’s just return to form. Forget everything you’ve been told to think about dance performances before, during, and after.

This isn’t like my Dance Salad review last year. This isn’t meant to be perfect and precise and praising. It’s a response, not a review.


ganapati vandana : shantala shivalingappa

glory gold gardenia sunshine so sustained and vital as if everything remembered all at once that light is everything for nature in movement her hands lotus-like are light and shine from the palms outward radiant in their unison one hand loving the other plucking at the points in space that exist in everything bells and a braid crown of jewels the slightest tenderness of sight boldest strongest twitch of the eyebrow left right center right left and the strongest sway of weight all vibrating with brightness ephemerally warming whispering to everyone that grace is not a single nationality or dance vocabulary open your hearts listen and be warmed by a rich detailed beautiful sensational emotional transcendent culture you were once taught to think of as orientalism


flamenco section of fractus v : eastman

pulses mixed with sound starting out in darkness ending in famished expressions undulating practice sweat beading everywhere in all directions two men entering the space sacredly scouting out their place and suddenly a violent pas encounters without violence the male and female intermingle gender bends morphs transforms the sound leaving nothing behind sweeping the floor with heeled boots trample sift tremble shift tilt prance pound pace they are keeping the rhythm with their souls a verse of love trust harmony between two men and the music


carmen, pas de deux : texas ballet theater

we all know the story of a pas de deux en pointe with dramatics but the abstraction is real two dancers who are intimately aware of one another they flash a smile or sometimes recoil in regret everything escalates quickly as it usually does with carmen everything brings them together divide and conquer welcome back to houston again

Carl Coomer and Leticia Oliveira in Carmen choreographed by Carlos Acosta. Texas Ballet Theater. Photo by Amitava Sarkar 4

li : carolyn carlson company

soft gleaming breaks winged serenity it seems absorbed by two who know everything that is about to occur before anything even moves with a knowledge so kinesthetic with all the meditative cooperation they make for brush strokes in the air taking the elements around them sweeping their bodies slowing time bending breathing weaving a centered scream to the sky orbiting now pulse of the dualities of life like a sith like a jedi only more deeper they are finding balance between dynamics taking time to build taking time to pause like a scene from a wong kar wai film in sepia

« Li » est un idéogramme qui désigne, à l’origine,
“Li” is an ideogram that means, originally,
le grain dans le jade ou le bois,
the grain in the wood or jade,
le « motif organique » à la base de toutes choses,
the “organic cause” at the base of all things,
quand l’être s’accorde avec le « tao ».
when being accords with the ” tao “.
Les transformations de la nature
Nature’s transformations
Le souffle du vent
The wind
La pénombre et la lumière
The darkness and the light
La dualité du yin et du yang
The duality of yin and yang
Que l’un devienne l’autre
That one becomes the other
Sans un mot.
Without a word.
-Carolyn Carlson

player : norwegian national ballet

melt into your persona fierce blond ice skater little dancer aged fourteen years make every moment count stay true to yourself these are things that were told 1 2 3 4 5 6 the woman becomes many a tessellation a mandala of herself as meditation or egotistical she reminds herself this is earthy rich in everything that’s come before her in her many years as a dancer in the many years of dance this one woman is communing with everything she has ever known pressing buttons and reaching for limitations communing with the little dancer aged fourteen years rotating not sure of herself but pinched into practice almost twenty-first century strokes of movement but still entirely classical keep working little dancer aged fourteen years it has only been one hundred and thirty six years

touch of gravity : susanna leinonen company

leap into the dripping bodies of women a flock of souls and look at their curves and twists as they navigate ripple and react to one another accurately coping the screen above from another dimension codes of movement kept in their individual bodies patterned out in welcomed by an embrace trusting in the power of many while letting their poetry fly explore the realm that is not of this world but is part of our lives


lessons: march : evidence, a dance company

listen to his hers our story this might be his hers our last chance once there was a time when we did not have to remind humans to be kind to one another but again and still we must and a duet of minds and bodies is bridging the hearts of many here right now at this very moment in time in this very small space a dot in the world this is the only time we have to remind each other to move and be moved

Coral Dolphin_Annique Roberts_March_Ayodele Casel

swan : charles “lil’ buck” riley

crack break push rock swing slide everything done in style with a confidence that manipulated the confines of an angle or position that we thought we knew tendu into twist no port de bras chicken arms bourrée without the tulle instead he knows movement in the muscles and joints of his life turning a swan back into its natural state volatile versatile vivacious no longer weak fragile dying living what would pavlova think

fractus v : eastman

how did we get here and why do we continue without a single step the chorus of movement by vocal traditions passed down by generations of love reassures us that we are safe away with the hate of this place enter the wide world web of woke movement that reflects voices of many steps distilled into a form that is so malleable that I wonder what style they were originally trained in and if that even matters because what is a style if not a movement of love passed down by generations of love jigsaws of many to puzzle the future recoil react always capture that last sentence with a punctuation do not take me by force let your center go free like a gaga class in summer they invoke the female of hip sways and swagger with sass next they teach us about trust infidelity respect chaos infectious thinking with a soul solo a drummer to a dancer to a musician to a performer to words to steps to sounds to movement hands slap elbows break the wrists clap the hands beat the chest hit the knees i want to approach all insight with this kind of honesty an exercise in life through dance with music in words

Nine different nationalities and outspoken identities will dialogue to come to an intense, dramatic and fluent whole… Fractus V stands for the natural fractures which are necessary to grow and become stronger…In Fractus V, I want to deepen the questions on information and manipulation; propaganda versus a more ‘objective’ and factual approach.
If I translate Chomsky’s ideas for myself, I gain the insight that: ‘The only way the individual is able to protect himself against political and social propaganda, is to study all the information available. Each day we are bombarded with news that tries to influence our thinking. It is a very intensive exercise to filter everything and to resist believing what we are told to believe.
-Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui


blooming : shantala shivalingappa & charles “lil’ buck” riley

a frolic into blending an education of wits and energy both feeding the space of their orbit breaking broken bold from all directions but also grounded on two feet points of connection realizations about individuals nationalities communities history building upon layers and layers and layers and layers and layers of movement with emotion that i have always felt from every dance i have ever known in this life and my others past i think i knew shantala in another life

romeo & juliet : susanna leinonen company

from the midst a rose withering surreal supreme tension embodied haunting dread coming sensations blooming brutality muffled capulets drenched in water painted faces that reflect mexico in her sensual celebrations dancers in silhouette static prokofiev like a clint mansell remix directed by aronofsky sharing partners erect juliet reverse romeo dance with a corpse of course but how do you walk away from the body of your love embrace of the afterlife shimmering spanning cloth and droplets of digital waves wrap around you welcome home

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