Friday, August 1, 2014

Dance Theater of Harlem

I saw a stunning Dance Theater of Harlem performance at Celebrate Brooklyn last night. It was really rousing and mesmerizing. Beautiful and energizing. I was so excite and pumped after I left. It was great.

The first dance, choreographed by Alvin Ailey, "The Lark Ascending" was lovely, dreamy, and very classical feeling. The second dance was my favorite: "Contested Space" -- dark and industrial-sounding music created a strange and haunted mood. The dancing felt completely innovative to me, and the work en pointe was fascinating, frenetic, charming, and wonderful. I enjoyed it so much that if they had simply repeated it for their third dance I would have been just as enthralled. The third dance, "Return", was the crowd-pleaser. Set to James Brown and Aretha Franklin, the choreography was described by The New York Times as "a witty fusion of ballet technique and street gait." It was remarkably fun. The sound was terrific and for me the incredible music might have overwhelmed the dancing a bit.

The night started with cellist and singer Leyla McCalla, who performed Creole and English songs, both original and traditional. She was accompanied by a bassist, and the music was great. She had a clear, deep voice that I liked a lot, and I'll probably be downloading some of her work from itunes.

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