08 April 2010

There are no pictures because there are none on the internet, but it was super gorgeous: ZviDance's ZOOM

I don't know a ton about dance. I know what I like, but then I'm like that person who always orders pad thai when they go for Thai food... I guess, to keep the analogy alive, unless they're presented with some free coconut curry, but only if the curry looks really good. ZviDance is my pad thai. I saw them perform at Jacob's Pillow a few years ago when I was in MA with a friend's family, and fell in love with their style. I still remember the undulating duets, especially the men together, lifting and leaning body weight against one another. It was gorgeous, and strong. One of those things where it's like, "Whatever you guys do, if I can, I will see it."


And, largely, I have. A show at the 92nd St Y a couple of years ago; last summer's installation at Governors Island. The Gov's Island piece was less choreography than I would've liked, more movement and wrapping gauze around trees, but it was still cool. And last night I got to see the world premiere of their new piece: Zoom.

This is another concepty piece, integrating projections and audience participation - photos and text messages ("keep your cell phones out!") - but it was still full of dance. Athletic, graceful, beautiful dance.

The audience participation aspects - texting in photos of the dancers, texting conversation with a dancer lying on the floor at a laptop, audience members (other audience members) being called on their cells to come down to the stage to take a picture of or with a dancer - tied with some of the dance gestures to give the sense of some sort of commentary on our communications culture - our dependence on our gadgets, the computer interface of our relationships, the saturation and inundation, etc. The participation was fun, if not exactly integrated with the dancing. (A lot of the texts the computer-using dancer got were requests for more dancing. Some of which - "Can we see more of the kicky thing?" were delightfully honored by some other dancers across the back of the stage.) But the commentary... So really, our society is oversaturated with cell phones and text messaging and internet chat? Huh. I am not opposed to political theatre, nor that sort of commentary in a dance piece, but in this case it was like, Okay, fine, but can you get back to the kicky things?

And oh, the kicky things. And the lifty things. And the falling and flying and dancing was so, so good. There's something so kinetic about the ZviDance style. Strong, beautiful dancers (with a gorgeous, diverse range of body types, heights, and sizes) and a choreography that just fills my heart with the joy of movement.

I like them a lot.

ZviDance is at Dance Theatre Workshop until April 10, aka Saturday. For $20 ($16 for students and seniors!) it's totally worth it to see some gorgeous, awesome dance, and maybe get your text message projected on the big screen.

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