Ford Centre for the Performing Arts
Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring in 'Da Funk
Choreography of Savion Glover and re-created by Derick K. Grant,
October 20 to Nov 1/98
Unique and Enervating!
by Violetta Lapinski
Tony Award winning Director George C. Wolfe presents a unique and enervating Broadway production. Combined with the choreography of Savion Glover and re-created by Derick K. Grant,, 'Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring in 'Da Funk' gives new meaning to Tap.
This richly woven production blends African American history with the art and tradition of tap dance and soulful song. Emotional stories are visually exposed through each scene, through the dance steps, body movements, singing, lighting and set.
The energy is high and hypnotic, the viewer drawn into the past and catapulted to the present. Like heartbeats, the dancers pulse off each other, whilst the haunting and powerful voice of Ann Duquesnay wafts evocatively through the theatre.
The speaker tells the tales of strength, pain, pride and love. Each scene is a different time in the history of Black African Americans depicted poignantly and with humour and warmth. Visual multi-media screens are set at the back of the set incorporating black & white photos and words. Above the stage, a small banner of words also changes with each scene, delivering a deeper impact.
All the dancers were outstanding in their tap performances. Perfectly syncronized, they swayed, jumped, leapt and tapped to a more modern and liberating finale. The drummers combined their expert skills on each other, pots and pans, garbage cans and plastic food pails. Music never sounded so wonderful! They provided fun and dramatic energy to the performance.
Ricardo Hernandez's artistic and stylized Set Decoration was detailed, accurate and original, combining shapes with function and colour. Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer were responsible for the transclucent and memerizing lighting, bringing not just time of day to the scene, but emotional connection.
Lighting was effectively used to convey anguish, joy and celebration on the performers so subtly. Costumes were designed by Paul Tazewell. Again, the historic accuracy and wonderful blends of texture, colour and fabrics created mood and life to the performers. The Sound design by Jon Weston were powerful and completely engrossing, in one instance a train is going by, and you feel hear the whistle, steam and feel the reverberation.
Music Supervision/Direction was aptly shared by Daryl Waters and Zane Mark, the original score and theme deftly crafted to produce a balanced, entrancing and highly energetic atmosphere.
A Broadway Musical well worth experiencing!!
Copyright 1998 Violetta Lapinski