The FRESH Festival and Liss Fain Dance welcome 2014 with exciting new works
Excerpts from The Waves (read by Marty Pistone and Val Sinckler) interwove with Dan Wool's original score; together they generated and commented on the choreography. A few tiny narratives emerged. The heat rose momentarily to party level to the strains of Mendelssohn as the dancers (in their suspenders) remembered ballet phrases. It was a charmingly telling moment, because in the back of Fain's mind ballet is ever present, though she rarely uses its vocabulary. Hers is a deep but not literal kinship to the tradition.
Once, all six dancers broke into a series of side hops as if engaged in a game. At another spot two people "died" and were mourned with an encircling dance by sister team Shannon Kurashige and Megan Kurashige. But these moments evaporated, leaving no traces — perhaps like memories, perhaps like passing thoughts. My sense, however, is that better familiarity on my part with the text might have yielded more insights on just how Fain used her literary sources.
Her dancers are individualists — wonderful to watch in unisons when circling the stage or hanging on to each other in a chain or a follow-the-leader section. In repeated duets the lanky Jeremiah Crank partnered a short and fierce Carson Stein, while tall Katharine Hawthorne paired with compact Alec Lytton (who promptly flipped her). One of After's particularly intriguing traits was a plethora of unexpected stops and broken connections, with dancers waiting and watching from the sidelines much like we did. At times you felt that these people knew each other, but their encounters also seemed controlled by serendipity, as if they just happened to bump into each other. *
FRESH FESTIVAL 2014
80 Turk, SF
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