Thursday, November 09, 2006


Four different choreographic works mark the finesse of the company. Throughout the evening, the company’s strengths unfold after each piece, bringing out the fine quality of the dancers to greater heights.

The evening began with Vier Letzte Lieder, a serene and fluid piece, that had a slight therapeutic effect on me. Set against an illustrated backdrop of soft coloured clouds, landscapes, further enhanced with gentle lighting and earthy tones of green, lilac, orange and mustard coloured costumes. The music was beautifully provided by soprano, Camellia Johnson. The movement and partnering were smooth flowing and there were some mesmerizing moments in the choreography.
Rubinald Rofino Pronk, as the Angel, possessed great elevation, flexibility and strong stage presence, was a dark and powerful figure.

Suite for Two, a world premiere, choreographed by Krzysztof Pastor, was a short piece danced by both principals, Ruta Jezerskyte and Cedric Ygnace, accompanied on stage with cellist Quirine Viersen. Personally I enjoyed this piece very much. There were moments in the choreography, where the movement expressed the music so appropriately, creating a harmonious relationship between them. In addition, the dancers and cellist complemented with one another throughout, making it a sublime performance.

The performance was getting more and more impressive as the program continued. Frank Bridge Variation (Hans van Manen) accentuated the company’s strength. Mostly performed in couples, the dancers demonstrated polished partnering and awareness of unison. One of my personal favourite moments in this piece was in the ‘minimalist’ segment, where dancers walked linearly across the stage, picking up other dancers from the wings, accompanied by a menancing and psycho-like segment of the music; I thought it was cleverly planned with the use of simple and steady walks in unison, yet demonstrating a brilliant use of space and patterning.

Forsythe’s The Second Detail intensified the company’s talent. Set against a white backdrop, 13 stools upstage, enclosed wings, and cool grey bodysuits, the attention is drawn to the technical prowess of the dancers. Thom Willems’ music was terribly creative and impact-ful. The music with the choreography and the dancing seemed to magnetize one another. The dynamic 13 dancers performed with much zeal, demonstrating definite sharp lines and ductile use of the body. Marisa Lopez stood out most significantly with her effortless dancing and fine showmanship. Her solo had good attack and her movements were sharp and precise.

When strong choreography coupled with strong dancing, it would create an excellent experience for an audience. Throughout the evening, after each piece when the dancers take their bow, the audience relentlessly applauded, cheered and whistled for the hugely deserving dancers and musicians. It seemed like it was a remarkably enjoyable evening for the performers and the audience.


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