Performed right at the audience’s feet, -ism offers a rare up-close performance experience. Sliding along the floor, the dancers move like cubist amoebas wrapped in plastic. They crinkle and melt, shifting into twisted stretches and folding through flat tangles. As inevitable as erosion, they rearrange the audience seating as the performance progresses. Some viewers find themselves inside the performance space, watching the dance unfold all around them.

was developed in creative residencies at Dance Theater Workshop, the Chocolate Factory and The Field over a full year. -ism was performed at
The Chocolate Factory and at Joyce SoHo. It was an exciting experiment for audience and performers alike!

Click on: Comments to read people’s reactions.

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5 Responses to -ism

  1. Pele says:

    Did you see the piece? If so let me know what you thought! If you don’t know what to say you can tell me:
    -What you noticed
    -What you felt or thought during the performance
    -What questions you have about it
    -What you interpreted
    -What did not make sense to you
    -What parts either bored or excited you

  2. Anonymous says:

    Very nice work! I saw very strong images, a lot of which had a compelling relationship with the work of Hans Bellmer. Later in the piece, I enjoyed the pieces of costume coming out, like shedding skins or mummy wrappings.

    I had a feeling of heavy-handedness at the end, which I think came from the intensity of the music, and I wondered why the dancers came back on stage once they left for the second-to-last time. In general, I felt like each section went longer than I was interested in, however, I really liked the deliberate pace and careful consideration of each idea.

    Finally, the moving of the chairs is so effective! It’s a wonderful way to get people involved and active without being dangerous or embarrassing. I really liked how they started out by getting pushed with their backs to the rest of us but ended up getting turned around. Once they were turned around, they became an even more active part of the piece because they were moving around in their chairs to look at the dancers. Congratulations!

  3. Elo says:

    Hey Pele, just posting a little comment to say how great it was from a performer’s point of view.
    Got a message from my friend who said this was a piece that was gonna stay with him for a long time !!

    Talk to you soon …

  4. Chris Becker says:

    Yeah, I dug it. Great ensemble performance. You all created a world of indigenous (sp?) activites – like those of some new life forms – and managed to throw into relief the (very human) awkwardness of those observing you. It was a shock to see the dancers STAND UP at the end of the performance. It was like we all suddenly came up for air after being under the surface of the ocean for several minutes.

    I loved the sound of the wax paper and the breath of the dancers. I wondered what it would have been like to not have Ingram Marshall’s music and just have had that wax paper sound as your “score”?

  5. Anonymous says:

    i saw your performance at the chocolate factory and was really moved and impressed. it was so ambitious and it worked so well. in fact, there were two aspects that were totally unique and new for me –

    first, you created a genuinely unique movement. i have’t actually seen dancers move like that. and i appreciated how gesture was incorporated in that movement, especially with the two dancers that evolved into standing position. and the movement really made sense within the ambience/environment that you created. the dancers had integrity throughout the piece … i never wondered why she was doing that at any point … once you accepted the premise, the whole thing made sense … even if i didn’t “understand” it in a narrative sense.

    second, i loved what you did with the chairs … a great way of involving the audience and have them experience the dance on a whole new level. i had never seen this device. it drew the other audience members in as well.

    i can’t remember the last dance performance i’ve been to where i saw two new and unique elements in one night. many, many, many variations on a theme or newness that did not work for me, but rarely a genuinely compelling creativity.

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