ECHO

Contemporary dance Reviews. Choose from the titles below in this column to display the corresponding review in the right column.

Berichte über zeitgenössischen Tanz. Wählen Sie aus den Titeln unten in dieser Spalte, um den Bericht in der rechten Spalte darzustellen.

ZKM Young Choreographers Session Jan 2014

Aslizadyan/Oliveira: Two 4 One

Montpellier Dance Festival 2007

Christian Spuck: The Children

vera | sander | art | connect TRESPASSING

Laureates: Africa/Indian Ocean

Eun Me Ahn: Please Hold My Hands

Lara Martelli: Solo mit Sahne

Akram Khan: Kaash

Junge Choreographen Folkwangschule 2003

Theater der Klänge: Modul|a|t|o|r|

Wim Vandekeybus: Blush

 

 

Ultimavez Wim Vandekeybus, Blush

Pact Zollverein, Essen/Germany, 30 November 2002

Author: Jochen Krölls

The stage background cloth of the introductory scene shows a lake surface surrounded by trees. The cloth is then drawn off-stage in a bizarre way, through a slit in a screen that it has been covering.

Literally out of the blue the screen becomes a vertical inlet to the lake, a view under its surface. The turbid water’s colours, sunshine yellow-red and plankton green absorb the whole stage. Equally the scene is plunged into David Eugene Edwards’ rhythmic, yet meditative, music. We are amidst of it, with the dancers. Some of them now visible behind the inlet, in the lake.

Suddenly the first dancer dives horizontally into the lake, through the inlet, through the screen!, and it becomes obvious that the whole screen consists of white elastic, vertically tightened, tapes. Any instance a dancer plunges through the opening there is a turbulence of water bubbles on the video screen that makes the dive even more realistic. Later, and even more spectacularly, they dive from behind the screen onto stage.

A danseuse throws fodder to other dancers who greedily snap at it like pigs and start uttering pig sounds. Correspondingly the screen starts showing us a crowd of wild boars jostling for fodder.


The dancers build up a pile of travelling bags just covering the screen, which they later toss down from behind, opening the on-screen view onto muddling humans, moving like in mud, like frogs do. Later the scene moves to, similarly muddling, frogs. Another scene, reeds in the wind, again ideal for plunging into, emerging from, and dancing and dreaming and meditating. Again the dancer pulls the frog out of his mouth.

The frog is an element of repetition. Here, under water, it slips away from the mouth of a dancer and swims away.

In the introductory scene a woman gratifies her sexual desires on a sleeping man, followed by her French spoken statement that it is never as good as when he sleeps. Heart-stirring screams, a frog, alive, pulled out of a mouth and later stuffed into a mixer (not really, but the impression is created). Recited poems, words declaimed by dancers who have not received articulation training, in a language not their mother tongue, simultaneously concentrating on movement and respiration (an enormous performance!), make it hard for me, if not impossible, to comprehend and appreciate the framework into which the dance is embedded.

Never have I seen a coherent use and integration of video and dance such as Wim Vandekeybus and his compagnie have demonstrated in Blush. The extensive dance scenes let me immerse in abundant light, rhythm and dream. A beautiful, bizarre but clear, unique dance language, intelligent yet intuitive patterns of movement, repetetive scenes long enough to take in but never dull, and great performers.

You must Blush. Plunge into it.

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