BWW REVIEW: APAP Showcases Appear at Peridance
On January 6, 2019 at 7:30, I attended the final performance of APAP Showcases at Peridance (program B).
First on the program was an interesting duo from Age on Stage/Charlotta Ofverholm presenting Beauty and the Beast (excerpt). Ofverholm began by explaining to the audience that the pair of dancers were "old". They performed an adult fairy tale. Her partner, Rafi Sady, was a divine, bare-chested, exquisite and seasoned dancer. Was he Beauty or the Beast? (Costuming half way through did reveal him to be the beast. Costumes by Mieke Kockelkorn) The choreography to a collage of Tchaikovsky by Martin Harriague was musical and fun.
Of the nine pieces that followed, seven had in common a sound-track that included what sounded to me like an electronic buzz. This was so prevalent that, for a moment, I questioned my own hearing. It must be the current fashion in modern dance or what passes for contemporary dance in this country. I am still trying to understand the choice, whether for a solo, a duet, or up to ten dancers. As none of the dancers approached the professionalism of Sady, the level of excitement and enjoyment went down (for me). The buzz of it all seemed to blend the works together.
Afinity, however, presented by Flock/Alice Kiock & Florian Lochner, had some appeal. It was an intense duo to rhythmic beats, music: Sleepers Beat Theme by Ben Lucas Boysen and Tick of the Clock by Chromatics. The choreography, costume design, and dancing were done by Kiock and Lochner.
One piece that did not buzz (proving that it was not an issue with my hearing) was excerpts from The Last Supper by Luminario Ballet of Los Angeles/Judith Flex Helle. The work was choreographed by Helle to music: Right Said Fred, Nirvana (I'm too sexy for my...). The ten dancers included two women on pointe, two wearing heels, and six men. All expressed in-your-face sexuality, the kind one might see at a strip club, with explicit sex moves made towards each other and towards the audience. There was nothing subtle nor intriguing. Instead, it was rather pornographic in approach. Would they make more money in an adult club?
Certainly, APAP offers a showcase, a smorgasbord of groups performing short excerpts of their works in hopes of winning the backing of donors who will support them, bringing full length performances to New York City. The price of tickets to see the several performances available approaches $1,500.00. This would imply that the audience is looking for worthwhile talent.
Photo: by permission of the artists