Amanda’s Journal: May 6, 2005 Friday

Friday, May 6, 2005

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Well, this trip to England and the Springdance festival has truly altered me. I mean I feel that I am viewing work that I see differently after having been to that festival. We, Tobin and I, went to a dance performance tonight and I wonder if the piece that really struck me the most would have had the same effect on me before going to that festival. Or perhaps this change could be a part of my work so far with Sue. As the piece that really struck the most, as the most genuine and touching was created by one of Sue’s dancers, Henry Montes. The work used improvisation and “authentic Movement” and it really brought out the personalities of the dancers. There was a very clear structure, a la Sue, and there was a very clear intention. Questions were asked and answered and the performance really felt genuine. A real treat. On the program was also a work by Thomas Lehman, whose worked we missed at the Springdance Festival but that I had highlighted as something I wanted to see. This particular piece was interesting and somewhat engaging but not altogether whole. It did hold a similar aesthetic to the other work that we saw at the festival. A work by Canadian Crystal Pite was on the bill as well. I have been interested in seeing her work for quite some time and I enjoyed it. It closed the program very well. It was luscious and lyrical with some beautiful moments. Not as original as I had hoped but really nice and well suited for the dancers, which is feat in itself!

After the show we talked with one of Sue’s dancers and we got to talking about French choreographer Jerome Bel. His work was really the highlight of the festival for me and Laurent had a great story about his commission by the Paris Opera- the piece that we saw at the festival. I had wondered how on earth the Paris Opera would go about commissioning this particular solo. And had really wondered why the Paris Opera would choose such a choreographer. The story that Laurent told was priceless. To paraphrase: The director of the Paris Opera said to Jerome Bel, “ I do not think that dance is so important in your work, but I do think that your work is important for dance” Well said!