Monday, July 25, 2011

Down by the River

Specifically, at the plaza outside the Winter Garden just behind the World Trade Center site, one of the venues of the River to River festival.

They had a great day of movement theater a couple weekends ago. The first of three acts was a singular dance ensemble from Australia called "Strange Fruit." While that name conjures dreadful acts from the American South as hauntingly related by Billie Holiday, this was, well, not that.

This was a troupe of three dancers who climbed atop 15-foot posts in colorful corsets, dramatic headdresses, pantaloons and stockings.

Then they hoisted up giant hoop skirts that Scarlet O'Hara could only have dreamed of.

The dancers struck poses and fixed the audience with expressions alternating among coy, coquettish and seductive.

And then, it got weird.

They dipped and swayed and swerved and defied both gravity and reason, at a pace somewhere between outer space and flying trapeze. Very dreamlike, very surreal.

I got some video that gives a sense of the act in motion, but technical difficulties prevent me from posting it (for now, anyway... Anybody know how to synch a Samsung Galaxy S loaded with Froyo to a Mac? I can't believe that that language makes sense to me. And it's annoying that knowing what it means doesn't help me solve the problem. Another chapter in the seemingly endless saga of upgrade frustration. But I digress.)

The rest of the performance was fab too - Michael Moschen up close and juggling-historical, and the Streb company performing Human Fountain, their interpretation of dancing waters brought to life with bodies, scaffold and some big ass mats. The River to River people encouraged us to grab footage (and if I had a better memory I'd know what hashtag to use when Tweeting about it), and I'll share what I got when I'm able to load the video.

OH! And while I'm still in the neighborhood of the subject of dramatic clothing: go see the Alexander McQueen exhibit at the Met before it closes. The crowd is insane, but it's totally, completely, 100% worth it.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

FYI, this is called sway pole. Bello Nock does an act on a pole that is somewhere close to 100'. I have no problem climbing a Chinese Pole (same concept, but it is stationary), but sway poles are scaaaaaary.