Archive for November, 2014

Name Game

Saturday, November 22nd, 2014

Since about April I’ve had this growing Google spreadsheet called “Untitled Project” accumulating sheets about budget, music, props sets and costumes, grant proposals, sections of the dance and several other facets of the new production I’m working on. Here’s a portion of one sheet called “Title Ideas”:

Under the sun Dropcloth fold, unfold the fold, fold Tent Fold
Turn, turn, turn dropcloth/fold fold, the fold Fold/Forme
Fold, in a fold envelope Fixed Fold Fold Cycle
Roundel Ply Ambit / Fold Room Fold Series
Rondel in a fold Stanzas for a fold Fold circumference Series in the fold
Rondeau Cloth/Fold Stanzas in a fold folds of a remembered garment Round in the fold
der Reigen Fold on the bias Arias in a fold Interfacing Life in a fold
Roundelay Bodice Pendulum/Fold Dances in a fold
Pallium Ceiling Cirlce Fold
cloak, unveiling, reveil Mantle Drop/ped Cloth the inside surface at the top of a room Ceiling in a fold
Veil fold/fray
Reveil Enclosure BetweenFold Veiled circling fold
Did you mean revel reveal revile re veal re-veal ravel rivel Returning entredeux Veiling fold in the fray
19 arias for a small space Folio Vellum Enveil A series of returning folds
D. S. al Coda Lamina Pane Did you mean unveil A series of folds
Ritornello Returning un veil un-veil anvil evil envied envies

It’s dizzying, right? Tell me about  it. I’m finding it so difficult to give this piece a name…to summarize it in a few words, to give the viewer just enough and not too much, to find something spacious but not vacuous, snug but not a cage.

Many times I come to a new work with a title already in mind, or at least a good first draft. But this time I resisted looking for a title because I wanted to give the work more room to grow in a nameless way, unburdened by its own definition for as long as it needed. Well it’s time to print postcards, so…

Many of you know that a main theme I’ve been working with from the beginning is cycle. At last week’s rehearsal we showed a portion of the piece to our composer, Angelo, and for the first time I was able to see its identity more clearly emerge. Yes, we’re dancing about cycle, in cycles, in repeating poetic forms, but there’s more…there’s a sense of overhead weight (literal and figurative), and an attention to texture and material that I now see as equally prominent. So, my initial title “Turn, turn, turn” isn’t quite the one. And you can see the winding path to what I maybe think might possibly could be this work’s name.

I think I’m settling on A series of folds. For now. We’ll see what this week brings…


Partial Reviews

Saturday, November 22nd, 2014

Well, sorry everyone. It’s been a while since I donned my critic’s cap (at least in this context) and followed through on writing about the many amazing works being shown in this town. I noticed I’d abandoned a few so I thought I’d just throw out what I had and move on. Hope you enjoy this truncated

Kate Weare Company, Bright Land…August 13, 2010

Oh, what an evening–two great pieces, one great friend, and The Joyce.  Good old Joyce…the not-too-uncomfortable seats packed snugly together, voluptuous red curtain

Laura Peterson Choreography, Everyone…June 23, 2010

A hot HOT day in lower Manhattan.  Under the beating sun, 28 performers flowed, ran, tumbled and danced amid the glare of concrete, windows and astro turf in Laura Peterson’s new work, everyone.

Large, outdoor space

Many performers



The Forsythe Company, Decreation…October 16, 2009

I’ve been chomping at the bit to see something by William Forsythe live, and last night I got my chance at BAM’s Next Wave Festival.  Good thing I brought my bit too, because Decreation provided a serious chomp.  Sitting in the balcony, we had a clear view of the enormous stage, with an enormous circular table covered in white and a video screen.  The enormous cast of dancers entered briskly, most sitting in chairs set behind narrow black columns on the periphery.  Two headed for the video screen and one rolled out a large video camera.  A woman began to relay a caricatured version of both sides of a tense conversation, presumably between two lovers.  Her exaggerated, distorted voice and gestures found inverted echos in two women performing slow, contorted movements out in the greater space.

The large, dense work evolved from there, using as a base differing iterations of this same spoken argument–at times shockingly fierce and at others deftly poignant–spoken (or screamed) by various members of the cast.

The performers were totally immersed, whether executing jolting, spit-fire movement phrases or uttering gutteral croaks into a microphone.  And the aforementioned camera played a captivating role as well, capturing real time footage and images which appeared on the aforementioned screen, at times edited or manipulated in various ways.

Jamais Vu, a Dietz Marchant WIP…September 12, 2009

The elevator was slow in coming, which gave us the chance to dwell near a quirky wall mural in the DUMBO waterfront warehouse.  My husband and I, on our first date in…a while, savored the moments of adult company and finally entered the elevator.  We were delighted to emerge upon the bustling and cheery 9th floor of 10 Jay Street, home of Music-Theatre Group.  Bypassing the packed bar in favor of an early seat, we had a lovely opportunity to absorb the setting: a somewhat shallow but wide studio space with seemingly infinite height.  A dining table and chairs at one end, a scaffolding on the other, two steely tarps arced in the middle and a pile of glittery tinsel at center.  At the far end behind the table, the high wall was filled with words and thought maps in chalk–what I assumed to be various process tools and explorations of the work in progress.


Yep, that’s it. I know–lame.