Gigs, dance, art

March 12th, 2008: Christian Rizzo – Mon Amour

@théatre de la ville

The prologue at least made me smile. A pounding low pitched cycle started minutes before the curtain went up, and the seven dancers were standing on stage, their back to the audience, slightly bent forward and bobbing their hoods to the rhythm. Except for a big black ball among them, that could easily have been one of my usual noise concerts; that cracked me up. Latter the hoods were adorned with colorful veil then went down for good.

The music — performed on raised platforms in the back by Gerome Nox on electronics, Didier Ambact on drums and Bruno Chevillon on bass and double bass — was pretty good most of the time, but the texts read by Mark Tompkins were real grating to my ears. The William Carlos Williams thing kinda ringed true but truth isn’t always interesting. And that Patty Smith one was definitely not my cup of tea either. I tried to ignore these, but mostly failed. The lighting was nice though, and these slowly sliding black balls were pretty neat. At some point toward the end there were five of them on stage, of various sizes ranging from maybe 3′ to close to 7′ tall. Nice effect of these black balls reflecting the white ground, that gave rise to nice illusions.

What about the dance? Well, that’s the point. There was not that much, as I’m not willing to include carrying potted plants around or lying on the ground. That’s unfair, but the fact is that most of it was real slow and repetitive, which really means I didn’t get it. A lot of carrying each other, a few nice ideas but worked over way too much for me. It had its moments, but I thought it was too long. I’m not giving much credit to my thinking it was too long, maybe it needed that length for the good bits to make sense.

My favorite moments were short sequences when something different was going on. A burst of speed from a dancer on the front and side of the stage, standing and crouching in a narrowing band of light. A spiderish mirror by two dancers on the ground with legs entwined. Some carrying bordering on puppetry ending in a surprise switch. And a swarming piling at the very end. I’m not enthusiastic, but I really liked these — and the black balls — so I’ll take it. It may not have been satisfying as a dance show, but it was not a waste of time either; and the part I really disliked was the text. Nonetheless, I liked his previous efforts better.

March 13, 2008 - Posted by | Dance | ,

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