The Week(end) Ahead: A.W.A.R.D.’s, Dance, Dance, & Red Shoes
Wow. What a week already! Up tonight–though none of your trusty Culturebot contributors look to be going–is night number two of the NYC edition of The A.W.A.R.D. Show at the Joyce Soho. I’m sure you all know how it works, and have a million different opinions about it ranging from ambivalence to outright hostility, with the odd full-blown supporter thrown in. So feel free to comment away. Last night, Yin Yue won, which means she goes onto the final round Saturday, against whoever wins the audience vote tonight and tomorrow. At the very least, it’s a very cool opportunity for emerging artists to showcase their work.
Otherwise, tonight is the opening night of the Julian Barnett Project‘s Super Natural at DNA. Barnett, born in Japan and raised in SoCal on a diet of hiphop and breakdancing, is exploring the potential for transcendence through movement in his new piece. And yes, I know that’s one of those ridiculous PR notes sort of statements (like dance having “an intense physicality,” as opposed to, you know, the other kind of not-particularly physical dance), but as a starting point if offers a lot of rich opportunities, and in fact is a rather risky concept to tackle. Dance is an art form which requires the artist transform his or her own body into an instrument capable of actions and movements the average body is not. While exploring movement itself is almost self-absorbed in its inward gaze, when successful, the results can be astounding, as dancers achieve a deeply powerful form of communication completely stripped free of referents. Or it can be awful. Hence the risk, but I think Barnett may be able to pull it off.
As for the rest of the crew, Alyssa is heading to Kneehigh Theatre‘s The Red Shoes at St. Ann’s Warehouse this weekend, and I’ll be catching it come Tuesday. Mike Shepherd founded Kneehigh nearly 30 years ago when he moved to Cornwall, England to establish his company, which remains true to its country roots, the work-a-day humdrum of farm life and the complex sense of community and place which exist in smaller communities informs Kneehigh’s aesthetic and work ethic, which promises to be on display in their rich reimagining of the Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale.
Maura Donohue, for her part, is interviewing both Barnett and Lar Lubovitch, whose Legend is debuting at the BAC tonight, along with revivals of North Star and Coltrane’s Favorite Things. Aaron Mattocks saw (and interviewed) Jonah Bokaer, whose Anchises is playing at Abrons Arts Center, and aside from hitting a couple other shows, this evening Mattocks’ own visual art work will be opening as part of a group show at Pratt Manhattan Gallery, called Blind Dates Show.