Gigs, dance, art

December 17th, 2008: Emio Greco / Pieter C. Scholten – [purgatorio] POPOPERA

@théatre de la ville

Now that was much more like it. I do like Emio Greco as a dancer, and I think he was there, but I like this one much better than his solo I saw last week. I was only marginally better seated, but it was less of a problem because a lot of the action took place a bit further back on the stage.

The opening sequence with dancers laying guitars on the ground in the front wasn’t reassuring, but it seemed to take off as soon as this was done. One singer — dressed in black at first, then in gold — six dancers plus on fully dressed in black and ski mask — I think that was Emio Greco, but I can’t say for sure.

Having several dancers on stages opens up different possibilities, and in this case it was having each one having a slightly different personality on display — through the costume, but mainly through movement. The most obvious instance was when each dancer in turn would emerge from the group and face it on a side of the stage before joining it back again. Each one was different, I guess from what I read it was related to a cardinal sin, but I didn’t catch that reference and didn’t even try. This pattern was less obvious later but the idea was very much in there.

The dark figure was hovering in the back for the first half or so, but that kinda played into that scheme. Eventually he made incursions in the middle of the group, but always remained clearly separate, through his costume, his trajectory and his movements. The second half also had the other dancers grabbing guitars and actually playing — or at least fooling me into thinking they did. Not my favorite moment dance-wise, but the music was indeed compelling. The dance got back to being good quickly though.

Of course with six electric guitars I had to think of Rhys Chatham, but that was different, and that’s when I realized the Michael Gordon responsible for the music must be the one I know about — again I could have been fooled, but that would have to have been intentional and I think he’s not enough of a household name for that. This time the song from Eraserhead was briefly played in its original version before segueing into the Pixies cover. Nice reference again, but Michael Gordon would probably have done a better job of twisting it than the Pixies.

The music sure was more my kind of thing than during last week’s show, but I do think the dance is what made the difference. More diverse and just more interesting because of the variations between dancers. I really liked this one. So I hope I’ll get to [heaven] next year.


December 23, 2008 - Posted by | Dance | ,

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