THROW at Chocolate Factory
Tuesday night I caught Ursula Eagly’s newest work-in-progress at Sarah Maxfield’s rich and useful Throw Series at the Chocolate Factory. Three choreographers show around 12 minutes of material and then ask the audience three specific questions. As Maxfield states, “it’s like a focus group for dance makers.” I’ve loved it from both the audience and the asking artist seat. It sets a good tone for artistic autonomy in the feedback process and provides audiences with unexpected responsibilities as respondents. On Tuesday, Eagly was up to a witty and original investigation of perspective, storytelling, and audience involvement in a piece that asked us to repeatedly open and close our eyes at her command while Abby Harris Holmes and Jeremy Holmes moved through a series of static postures. Though a typical imagine-a-blackout device, this was used as an essential part of our creation and reaction to the work. As it came out during the discussion, some people cheated and watched, seeing what they were not supposed to (are at least when they weren’t instructed to) and others got fatigued with the effort, but in the end each of us was accountable for our own experience. When this piece premieres in the spring at Danspace Project, you’ll want to be there.