It Seemed to Have It All: 9 Dancers, 5 Guitars, 5 Amps
“Dance Performance ‘takemehome’ Presents a Somber Scene”
The recent dance performance “takemehome,” choreographed by Dimitri Chamblas in collaboration with musician Kim Gordon, presented a somber scene that evoked a sense of anticipation. The performance, part of the Dance Reflections festival produced by Van Cleef & Arpels and NYU Skirball, showcased performers lying still on the stage before being helped up and escorted off by barefooted dancers. Despite the promising premise of the dance, it failed to deliver a lively and energetic performance.
The dance, which featured nine dancers, five electric guitars, and five amplifiers, was dominated by prolonged silence, with only sporadic vocalizations from Kim Gordon. The performers shifted between states of action and stillness, often retreating into solos that depicted a sense of isolation and despair.
Chamblas, drawing from his experience creating a dance program at a maximum-security prison, captured the despair and sorrow of isolation through the movements of his dancers. However, the performance’s reliance on slow-motion choreography was criticized as stale and unoriginal.
The lighting by Yves Godin and Virginie Mira added to the cool tone of the stage, with the zeppelin overhead turning a fiery red during a brief burst of energy from the performers. The scene concluded with a powerful solo by dancer Salia Sanou, leaving an impactful impression on the audience.
Overall, the performance showcased the theme of despair and isolation through its movements and mood, but was criticized for lacking energy and dynamism.
Historically, contemporary dance in Europe, particularly in France, has seen a rise in slow-motion choreography that some critics view as a subconscious call for a pause in the fast-paced world. However, this stylistic choice has also been criticized for becoming repetitive and stale.
In conclusion, “takemehome” presented a thought-provoking exploration of despair and isolation, but fell short in delivering a captivating and energetic performance.