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On December 6th I attended the Improv. Festival of NY, at St. Marks Church in the Bowery. Danspace presented it. The show ran a little over an hour.

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Kerri Hughes On December 6th I attended the Improv. Festival of NY, at St. Marks Church in the Bowery. Danspace presented it. The show ran a little over an hour. The first performance was danced by Sarah Rudner. She wore black leggings and a black sports bra top. She was hooked up to a machine that was playing her heartbeat. The lighting was simple white lights from the side and a white spotlight. I don't feel that the lighting affected the mood of the dance at all. It felt like watching an assembly in my high school auditorium. She seemed to be interpreting the movements of a heart. She used the entire floor space, which was good. She didn't have the difference in levels I was hoping for. She basically spent the dance in the middle level. Her footwork was incredible; I've never seen feet move so fast. What made her feet stand out so much were the soft, slow movements her arms and torso were making. Her sound of her lone heartbeat gradually blended with a man discussing the functions of her heart. As the performance went on another man and a woman joined in and began to count out of sync. This made me nervous. ...read more.


In fact they spent a lot of time actually on the floor. I enjoyed that. There was a lot of contact between the dancers. Most of the performance was done touching each other. At one point the choreography seemed to be simulating sex. It was sensual and arousing without being vulgar or perverted. During the entire piece I felt as though I was intruding on the dancers' privacy. At one point in the dance David removed an imaginary hair from BeBe''s shoulder and she brushed his hand away. I'm not sure why but at that moment a tear rolled down my cheek. It was just a beautiful representation of a relationship between a man and a woman. They used counterpoint well. Whenever they weren't touching each other they were doing their own moves. This helped them with the dynamic changes because if BeBe was dancing fast David was usually doing something slow and vice versa. The seating arrangement was almost that of theater in the round, so there was no set front of the stage. The dancers made good use of this arrangement by focusing their attention equally to all sides of the audience. I enjoyed the story their dance seemed to be telling: A couple starts dating, gets physical, things get weird between them, they fight, break up, make up, live happily ever after. ...read more.


She did a series of forced arch pliates across the floor, and sashayed back. I liked that amongst all the confusion and laughter I recognized things from class. She had a good use of levels as well. There were lots of leaps and she spent a lot of time on the floor as well. She combined soft, fluid movements of her right arm with harsh jerky movements of her left leg. Occasionally there were cowbells in the background. She definitely reminded me of the character Maureen from RENT. She did one move and I thought I was watching ice-skating. She did a series of spins on one foot that went from slow to fast and then she fell to floor (on purpose). Although I said that there was confusion in the dance it was always clear that she as a character knew what she was doing until the end. The end was as if she'd come undone. She'd been holding on to her sanity by a thread and it just snapped. She was almost sobbing and singing "Hush Little Baby" while rocking herself onto the floor. Then she got up and did cartwheels up the stairs and slid down the wall while saying "all we are saying." When she finished the audience erupted into applause and I was very disappointed that it was over. All in all it was a very interesting experience and I can't wait to attend another modern dance performance. ...read more.

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