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 Post subject: Lines Ballet 25th Anniversary season
PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 1:27 pm 
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From the SF Weekly.

Quote:
Lines of Longitude
LINES Ballet makes cross-cultural strides for its 25th–anniversary season
By Odell, Bonner
Published: September 5, 2007

Cultural cross-pollination reemerges in a pair of world premieres to be performed this November during the company's 25th-anniversary season at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. The first is a partnership with world-renowned tabla master Zakir Hussein, best known in the West for his Grammy-winning work with Mickey Hart on the album Planet Drum.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 2:08 pm 
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LINES Ballet will be performing in Akron, Ohio on Saturday, September 29, 2007. The Cleveland Free Times published a preview today, which includes a luminous photograph of Aesha Ashe:

Cleveland Free Times


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 2:02 pm 
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Elaine Guregian has an extensive preview in the Akron Beacon Journal:

Akron Beacon Journal


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2007 1:56 pm 
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Elaine Guregian reviews the Saturday, September 29, 2007 performance in the Akron Beacon Journal:

Akron Beacon Journal


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 4:15 pm 
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Rachel Howard previews the 25th Anniversary performances in the San Francisco Chronicle:

SF Chronicle


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 2:13 am 
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After seeing a preview of Alonzo King's collaboration with Zakir Hussain for Lines Ballet's 25th anniversary opening program at OCPAC a month or so ago, I was very excited to see the actual performance tonight (Sunday, November 4) at Yerba Buena. The program had two world premieres: Irregular Pearl set to live Baroque music and improvisation by members of the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, and Rasa, set to music by Hussain and Kala Ramnath.

Irregular Pearl was the first half of the evening, and was a bit too long and homogeneous in its movement. The dancers are beautiful, and move with a sinuous adagio quality at all speeds, but after a while everything kind of looks the same. I almost fell asleep, too.

Rasa was a different story altogether. Two things stood out: the amazing central pas de deux, which I think I could stand to watch at least 3 or 4 more times, and the movement quality and speed of the dancers in the latter half of the piece. The pas, danced by Laurel Keen and Brett Conway, was like an embodiment of yin and yang, rejection and desire, independence, interdependence, and co-dependence. Alternately pulling at each other, pushing each other away, dragging, rolling, and in general struggling across the floor, the pas makes its shapes with regular, ugly movements combined so seamlessly with classical ballet poses that you can't tell where one begins and the other begins. Often, choreography that tries to fuse prosaic movement with classical ballet looks contrived, like the choreographer had an internal checklist and schedule, with the switches looking like they were forced because he had to put something different in now.

Not so with Rasa. Even in the most turbulent, struggle-ridden moments, the ballet steps would suddenly appear as if they were the most natural transition to the set of steps. Conversely, unlike contact improv, the struggle in this piece doesn't look like two people trying to move a sofa up some steep stairs. This is struggle elevated and glorified, made beautiful and put on a pedestal, yet projecting all the difficulty. This is how everyday movement should be made into dance.

For me, this pas de deux alone is worth the price of admission, and is the most remarkable thing I have seen in a very long time. However, what pushes Rasa over the top is a series of solos for the dancers after the pas that has the ballet dancers moving like no other ballet dancers I've seen. Using ferocious speed, commitment, and a sharpness of attack more commonly found in krumping --- I keep thinking of the beginning of the documentary Rize which disclaims that none of its footage was sped up --- the dancers showed an amazing abandon in musically and choreographically complex movement.

Rasa is amazing stuff --- go see it!

--Andre


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 6:08 pm 
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Andre Yew wrote:
Conversely, unlike contact improv, the struggle in this piece doesn't look like two people trying to move a sofa up some steep stairs.

Hmm...I'd like to hear more about your reaction to contact improv. My impression is that good contact improv looks effortless, quite unlike two people trying to move a sofa up some steep stairs.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 6:27 pm 
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I agree with djb, good contact can be effortlessly beautiful. However, there isn't a lot of good contact out there.

Back to the subject.

A review from Rachel Howard in the SF Chronicle.

Quote:
Review: Lines Ballet celebrates 25 years with two world premieres

Rachel Howard, Chronicle Dance Correspondent

Monday, November 5, 2007
Rest assured all this was marked with due pomp at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts: fancy dinner, sparkling dresses, Champagne. And yet, if at some galas festivity trumps substance, that just isn't possible with King in charge. The man does not know how to be frivolous. There were luxuries aplenty Friday: fabulous live music and a guest appearance by former San Francisco Ballet ballerina Muriel Maffre. But the greatest richness was the dancing: purposeful, powerful and luscious. And that's a richness that should only deepen as the home season continues through Sunday.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 6:51 pm 
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And from the Contra Costa Times.

Quote:
Lines Ballet's silver celebration bathed in golden glow
By Anita Amirrezvani

CORRESPONDENT

The Bay Area arts scene wouldn't be the same without Alonzo King. For 25 years, the San Francisco choreographer has made risk-taking ballets that marry grace with grit. Sure, his work is beautiful, but what's even better is the way it captures the modern human condition in all its glorious contradictions.

King achieves this, in part, by commissioning edgy new music from renowned musicians. He and his company, Lines Ballet, are celebrating their silver anniversary this month with two world premieres featuring live music that continue Saturday and Sunday (Nov. 3 and 4) and Wednesday through Sunday (Nov. 7-11) at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 10:31 pm 
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LMCtech wrote:
I agree with djb, good contact can be effortlessly beautiful. However, there isn't a lot of good contact out there.


I guess I've been unlucky to see only bad contact improv.

--Andre


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