Gigs, dance, art

May 14th, 2009: Marie Chouinard – Orphée et Eurydice

@théatre de la ville

Funny how close it felt to last year’s show, even though that one dated from fifteen years ago and this one was new. Marie Chouinard did get better in that span, in my opinion. Sure there was this taste for the grotesque, and the habit of having dancers make faces; this time the jutting jaws gave way to gaping mouths. I did like the mix of animal intensity with a rather elaborate composition evidenced in some striking images — especially the few times the dancers lined up in the front, or some carries — that made great use of lighting, costumes, props and dance (of course).

On the other hand, there were a few light hearted comedy bits that I didn’t like much and, more annoying too me, a long sequence in the middle that was following much too closely the tale that gave its title to the show. The second “telling” put some distance, but still that was too close to mime to me, and the whole “creativity” thing rang a little too pretentious.

But that part segued suddenly into my favorite part, which had all the dancers on stage and mixed the story references with interesting dance, with a right balance between individual trajectories and a consistent group identity. That transition quite sums up my impression: a mix of things I liked a lot and stuff I didn’t, often in close succession if not going on at the same time in different parts of the stage. Often the obvious meanings are just boring enough for me to let my gaze wander to what’s going on in the back or on the sides, and more often than not I find something great there, many small things that renew my interest. And some arresting images that made my day. I don’t get it all, but that’s more than good enough for me.


May 17, 2009 - Posted by | Dance | ,

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