Arts » Theater + Dance

Review: Paired Down and ESW



3 stars

Motus Dance Theatre, White Rabbit, March 18-19.

Motus choreographers plumb intellectual and emotional themes for dancers to express through relationships with each other within the intimate White Rabbit space. The dance style, generally architectural and punchy, is sometimes softened to a sense of flowing evolvement, as in Stefanie Squint’s fragile “Flutter of Anticipation” set to Pink Martini’s pulsating layerings of violin, vocals, percussion and brass.

Emergence, life, closure without complaint. It’s a work enjoyed from a previous concert, as was Sara-Yanney-Chantansombut’s “Formerly Rose” solo danced by Michelle Buchanan with greater attention to the subtleties of music by Kate Lamont and Devon Ashley.

Buchanan, as choreographer, carries her closer listening to Lamont into her reworked “Formerly Syrah” giving the five dancers a greater sense of urgency and tension, turning seeming defeat into personal triumph.

The third Lamont-based piece, “Formerly Pink Moscato” was a restaging of Lauren Beirne’s work for 6-dancers dressed for a party, shedding purses and shoes to shake it and strut off. Katelin Ryan restaged “This is (not) Me” to music by Adam Crawley with cleaner relationships between three pairs as alter egos of self, with a whimsical, flirtatious ending. Buchanan choreographed and danced in “What Lies (Ahead),” a new self-searching duet (with Jenny Thomas), set to violin and accordion music by Miss Murgatroid and Petra Haden.

Full enjoyment of the program was impeded by the much too loud sound. Lamont’s trademark floating sense of melody above a solid rhythmical foundation especially deserves a quieter playback. The fusion group ESW, playing between dances was a welcoming calm between the audio blasts. See:


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