Gigs, dance, art

December 7th, 2009: Mathilde Monnier – Un Américain à Paris

@theatre de la ville

This was actually a short part of a tribute to Merce Cunningham that featured a short film about his career, the relevant part of Jérôme Bel’s Cédric Andrieux, and Boris Charmatz’ 50 ans de dance. More about those two later, both are on my schedule.

The evening had been planned as a private celebration of Cunningham’s turning 90, but his death turned it into a public tribute. I don’t know why I was invited while some people I know were not, even though they’ve been going there for longer than me. Anyway, it was one of those rare occasions when I saw no one after five or ten minutes — an otherwise sure bet.

Mathilde Monnier‘s tribute had a kid reading things that Cunningham had written or said about his experience in Paris over the years, including having people throw tomatoes at him — something that puzzles me because of the planning involved, though I never saw it happen — and teaching one of his pieces to the Paris Opera ballet dancers. These were often pretty interesting as he managed to come off as being very confident in his vision and ideas, but with a nice sense of humor and never taking himself too seriously. I’m not fond of seeing kids on stage like this, but I think it was a pretty good idea in this case, probably better than if a dancer had done the reading.

Well, he was actually a dancer, because the second part of this short set had him joined by Foofwa d’Imobilité, a former member of the MCDC. Obviously the kid didn’t go as far as the pro, but that kinda worked too. The dance had a few of the highly technical and so visually potent graphical figures of Cunningham’s dance, some typical arm and leg gestures, but the technical limitations of the kid made it less pure, and more alive and immediate. I didn’t like it much, but that quality made it worth seeing.


December 13, 2009 - Posted by | Dance | ,

1 Comment »

  1. very interesting post, thank you !

    Comment by Elise | December 13, 2009 | Reply

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