Idan Cohen's Swan Lake at CPR

Idan Cohen’s Swan Lake, photo by Marek Weis

Just got back from the Center for Performance Research where I saw Israeli choreographer Idan Cohen’s 2009 version of Swan Lake. I’m not too familiar with the big hits of ballet so I was lucky that Evan was there with her friend Mary to bring me up to speed. And though having some familiarity with the original is probably helpful, it isn’t necessary to enjoy this visceral exploration of the themes in the original story.

From the program notes:

“…The choreography is informed by the dancers’ shifting identities and their personal stories and biographies, which they use to create behavioral rules and codes for themselves and the other dancers.

The work is a continuous routine of tension and changes that lead to mutual oppression of all individuals that occupy that regime.

In this defined area, which behaviors and values would each of the characters carry with them in their endless search for freedom and salvation? …”

I really enjoyed watching these three athletic and precise dancers engage in an exploration of small-group dynamics, their shifting roles as dominator and dominated, their alternations between play and competition. Good stuff.

There is one more performance tomorrow at 7:30PM at the Center for Performance Research, 361 Manhattan Avenue in Brooklyn.  Directions to CPR are here. It is FREE!!

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