Gigs, dance, art

April 2nd, 2008: Marie Chouinard – Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune / Le sacre du printemps

@théatre de la ville

First, I kind of like the idea of taking on these biggies. It was not new stuff, both having been premiered about 15 years ago; I think it showed a little, but not too much. I was a bit surprised at the enthusiastic reception they got, but then again I often prove how little in touch I am; to me Marie Chouinard is good but not great. That sure beats the booing though.

The first part was a solo, with a nice costume with bristles on a shoulder and thigh and misshapen horns. The dancer was kinda pacing from one side of the state to the other, with a lot of right angles, especially at her wrists and elbows. The whole thing had a visceral and animal feel to it that I liked a lot. Both for the contrast with the music and the usual polished interpretation, and because it seemed very fitting for that theme. I could have used a little less grunting, but that was in character if a tad tedious after a while. The choreography hit the nail squarely, managing to avoid being too predictable while keeping a consistent feel.

I was not that keen on Rite of Spring. I really like the music, so I guess that raised the bar, as did previous takes on it I liked better. No wonder both date back from the same period, as the right angled arms were often on display. But it was far more diverse, from leaps to windmilling arms. I think a few things kept me on the outside though. The martial poses and jutting out jaws were a letdown, and I thought it was more a collection of solo sections than a collective effort — a shame with the group dynamics available in the music, but on the other hand a worthy try at something different. But the main downer was that it was far too illustrative of the music, as evidenced by the fact that the sections I really did like were those that strayed from it; but most of the time the movements were both isolated and toeing the line. Some great display of technique in an innovative way, but too many repetitions of not so interesting stuff. That’s unfair actually, but that comes with the territory, which is a way to say that my — relative — disappointment was mostly self-inflicted through unreasonable expectations.


April 2, 2008 - Posted by | Dance | ,

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