Lawrence Goldhuber is a dancer and choreographer best known for his work with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and his collaborative work with Heidi Latzky. Among his many other accomplishments he choreographedand performed The Seven Deadly Sins: Gluttony , commissioned by Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival and The Cost of Living with the British group DV8 Physical Theater in Sydney, London and Hong Kong. In 1995, he received a New York Dance and Performance (Bessie) Award for “sustained achievement as an influential presence in modern dance” and served as the co-host for the 2002 awards. His newest work, The Life and Times of Barry Goldhubris, opens on February 5, 2004 at P.S. 122.
1.The Life and Times of Barry Goldhubris is an interesting mix of dance, video and performance. How did you come up with the idea for the story? How did that influence your choice to work with video?
The last show I did at Performance Space 122 – When The World Smells Like Bacon– included a lot of autobiographical material and honesty. In response, I decided that my next show would be filled with nothing but fiction and lies. I had wanted to work with my talented filmmaker friend, David Brooks on a project for a long time and he agreed to come on board.
2.Obviously, the show’s name is very similar to your own. How much of the work is autobiographical?
None! David and I worked on the script together to create a character that bears no resemblance to me at all. I am rather apolitical and David is a radical. I love to collaborate and mix conflicting ideology. Photographs from my family archives are used in a “True Hollywood Biography” film within the piece, but only in support of a made-up story.
3.You started out as a commercial actor and are now working in the much less commercial discipline of dance. How did you make this transition?
I met choreographer Bill T. Jones in 1985 and said, “If you ever need a big man, give me a call.” He was interested in making himself the smaller half of a duet after 11 years of partnering Arnie Zane. I spent the next 10 years touring the world in their company.
4.You don’t have a traditional “dancer” body type. How has that influenced your choreography and you career? In particular, I am thinking of your piece Gluttony in The Seven Deadly Sins Project at Jacob’s Pillow.
When that show was offered to me, I was willing to tackle any of the sins. But I was happy to take on Gluttony, the one easiest for me to access. I made a dream ballet with a giant hotdog and chicken legs who devour me in the end- it was a hoot!
5.What’s next for you?
Well, I hope GOLDHUBRIS has a long touring life, it took 2 years and a lot of money to create. My next big project is a dance/theater version of Julius Caesar with 10 men over 300 lbs. at Danspace at St. Marks Church in May, 2005- BEWARE THE IDES OF MAY!