Dancing on the Edge: edge 3

Oxygen performed by Billy Marchenski
Choreography Jay Hirabayashi Music Swans Lighting Gerald King

performed byKaren Jamieson and Nathaniel Justiniano
Live Viola Stefan Smulovitz
Costume Design Susan Berganzi and Nathaniel Justiniano

Dates and Venue July 7 at 9pm + July 9 at 9pm | Firehall Arts Centre

Reviewer Nancie Ottem

Dancing on the Edge, the 27th annual festival of contemporary dance, runs this year from July 2 to July 11. Showcasing talent from across Canada, the Edge offers just that edgy, experimental dance that pushes the boundaries of dance giving artists and audiences the opportunity to create and experience something out of the box.

Oxygen is a powerful piece that explores the birthing of movement within a 20 minute time frame. It is riveting to watch the control of the exposed dancer as he experiments with the anatomy of movement. From tentative early growing pains of experimentation to the culmination of the piece in a frenzy of movement, the dancer deconstructs the essence of dance. There was an electrical force that accompanied the performance of Billy Marchenski. Lighting by Gerald King effectively highlighted the contours of the dancer’s body giving more impact to each movement.

The second piece offered on this program is entitled Trickster. Another 20 minute piece which was in complete contrast to Oxygen giving the evening a good balance. Trickster pokes fun at the seriousness of dance. One cannot help but laugh at the antics on stage. It is a delightful piece which gets a message across that we should not take ourselves too seriously. Not only does it poke fun at the pretension in dance it also asks questions of the confines of gender roles within dance. To the accompaniment of violist, Stefan Smulovitz, Jamieson and Justiniano gave a thoroughly uplifting performance.

© 2015 Nancie Ottem