BWW Reviews: LOVE HEALS ALL WOUNDS AT NYU Skirball
Conceived and choreographed by movement artists Lil Buck and Jon Boogz, Love Heals All Woundsis an arresting piece of dance activism. The duo are best known for their viral short film Color of Reality (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dq1tm5TqYsg), which continues to screen at film festivals worldwide and has won numerous awards.
Presented by MAI (Movement Art Is), an organization co-founded by the two dancers that seeks to elevate the artistic, educational and social impact of dance, the 80-minute work features fluid, frenetic and fragmented urban dance styles such as jookin', krumping, animation, breaking, popping and locking mixed with elements of ballet, house and African dance.
We attended a family matinee performance of Love Heals All Wounds at NYU Skirball as part of NYU's Serious Fun Family series;however, some of the mature themes are not suitable for young children.
Weaved together thematically by stirring spoken word poetry by Robin Sanders, the piece is broken into four segments that tackle social issues such as racism, immigration, gender equality and global warming.
The powerful opening segment, "AM i A MAN" features Lil Buck - a Memphis jookin' maestro named one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch"- and Joon Boogz - who has worked with Mikhail Baryshnikov - cheerfully entering the stage and greeting each other. Moments later, with red dye "bleeding" through their shirts, their pulsating movements pantomime that they have become two more black male victims of police brutality.
Although most of the subject matter is heavy, Love Heals All Wounds ends on a high note, with all the dancers taking turns freestyling and leading the audience in a call and response chant of the word "love." The show is currently touring and its next stops are Vaison-la-Romaine, France (July) and USC Visions & Voices in California (August).