I have to stop bouncing in my poor chair, but it’s hard. The chair is hard and it’s hard to stop bouncing.
On August 6th LeeSaar The Company will perform at the Prospect Park bandshell for free as part of Celebrate Brooklyn. On the program … a Naharin duet performed by dancers from Batsheva Dance Company. Do you know what this means?
I am a very happy gal. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen good modern dance and this is modern dance at its greatest. If you happen to be in Brooklyn and have a weakness for dance, don’t miss this.
Okay, backing up.
Ohad Naharin is an incredible choreographer. He’s a gift. And over the last few decades he’s refined his technique in a way that every breath, twitch and touch communicates. The Batsheva Dance Company responds to each other from the gut. They seem to be aware of only one another, the audience just happens to be there lucky enough to watch. It doesn’t really feel like you’re watching a performance. There are no elaborate costumes. The music is there, often electronic or more of a soundscape, but the movement is apart.
Like seeing Merce Cunningham’s work performed, Naharin’s technique is distinct, explosive and commanding. The Batsheva Dance Company performs like no other dancers in the world. Many try to perform like them – other dance companies use Naharin’s Gaga technique, but the result is a puddle when compared to the real thing.
I know I’m blathering, but it can’t be helped. Just yesterday my friend was bragging about seeing Batsheva Dance Company perform in San Francisco last fall. I was watching videos of their performances this afternoon when I should have been working but hush. Then I started hearing whatever band is playing tonight warming up so went to the Celebrate Brooklyn site to see that its Interpol. Scrolled down to see if anyone of interest was on the agenda for the rest of summer and there it was “Ohad Naharin and guest performers from Batsheva Dance Company”!
Modern dance works well on this outdoor stage. There’s something about watching bodies fly through the air under a layer of lights framed by the bandshell’s arch crowned with trees and the tops of brownstones along Prospect Park West beneath the orange haze that is NYC’s sky. It’s not magical at all. It’s weirdly natural and comforting to experience this art that uses the human body as its medium in a city park surrounded by humanity and concrete, but relatively free of walls and completely exposed to the elements. Don’t you dare rain, Nature.