CriticalDance Forum

Marie Chouinard
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Author:  RaHir [ Mon Oct 31, 2005 1:55 pm ]
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I noticed the lack of reviews, especially in the Chronicle, so I sent in a brief little letter to the editor, saying

Dear Editor,

I’m incredibly disappointed with your lack of performing arts coverage, specifically visiting dance companies. For example, Compagnie Jant-Bi’s two-night run at Yerba Buena shone brightly as one the past year’s major dance highlights, and Compagnie Marie Chouinard recently swept into San Francisco, yet the Chronicle didn’t review either of these companies. San Francisco serves as an arts mecca, and I would hope that the Datebook would support our cultural ideas and process of expression rather than simply write about passive, couch-type activities that really don’t require a lot of press and hype such as new television series, badly written movies, and what’s new out on DVD. Arts companies and presenters don’t have the big budgets that, for example, ABC, Universal, and Clear Channel have, so how about supporting them (the arts, that is) a little bit more? And maybe then, I’ll renew my subscription.

Becca Hirschman

P.S. Two wonderful companies are coming to town in the six months. Have you assigned reviewers to Ronald K. Brown/EVIDENCE and Doug Varone & Dancers?

Within hours (and this was on Saturday), I received an email response from David Wiegand. While I was disappointed with the paper's reasoning, I was impressed that I got any response at all.

Hi Becca, I am sorry you're disappointed, but the reality is that we probably offer more dance reviews than reviews or features on any single art form. Really. Ironically, we don't have a dance critic, but we have actually reviewed MORE dance programs using freelance writers than when we had our own critic. Can we get to every dance event in the Bay Area? Not at all. And we never can. I guess we prioritize Bay Area dance companies because they are Bay Area companies. For example, while we were not able to do Compagne Jant-Bi, we did choose to do the Yerba Buena program on up and coming Bay Area choreographers. Datebook serves many masters and many readers. You may not have any interest in TV or films, but I'm sure you understand other readers do. Our hope is to try to offer a balance. Again, I am sorry you're disappointed but assure you that we will always do our best. We make choices. We have to, and they are never easy.
Thanks so much for writing,
David Wiegand
Acting Deputy Managing Editor for Features

Author:  Andre Yew [ Mon Oct 31, 2005 4:07 pm ]
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Azlan wrote:
That summed up the night and for once, I was not shy in publically exclaiming my frustration at the end of a show.

Did you actually utter a boo? :twisted:


Author:  Azlan [ Mon Oct 31, 2005 9:42 pm ]
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No, I didn't actually boo but I groaned... But I wasn't as bad as the professional dancers around me who were loudly exclaiming, "Oh, no. Not again!" halfway through the first piece.

Author:  Azlan [ Mon Oct 31, 2005 10:18 pm ]
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Stuart Sweeney wrote:
Does that make me dishonest, Azlan? It seems more likely that the critics who appreciate her work, plus myself, simply don't share your taste in modern dance.


My point is, and as MEHunt and Becca have correctly pointed out, we haven't found any published reviews in the SF Bay Area. It seems we no longer have papers honestly doing their jobs with so many events gone unreviewed.

Author:  Stuart Sweeney [ Tue Nov 01, 2005 12:32 am ]
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Thanks for clarifying, Azlan, and my apologies: as all the reviews above for this programme over the past few years are positive, I understood that "honest" = negative.

It is, of course, entirely reasonable that thse two pieces didn't strike a chord with you and those around you, Azlan; it really would be boring if we all thought the same:

I've been through and tidied up some of the html problems that disrupt these older topics now and noted some earlier comments on this programme:

In "24 Preludes by Chopin" and "Le Cri du Monde," two New York premieres at the Joyce Theater, Ms. Chouinard takes her creativity onto an impressive and higher formal level."

Anne Kisselgoff, NY Times

In an art form that is rife with muddied intention, it is Chouinard's substantial choreographic facility that allows her to explore abstract subjects with such visceral clarity. Many choreographers excel at presenting movement that is beautiful or virtuousic, and others bring theatricality to contemporary dance, but few can do both with the skill of Marie Chouinard.

Marie, CriticalDance (Canadian dancer/choreographer)

These are two extremely accomplished pieces—products of a fully matured choreographic imagination.

Deborah Jowett, Village Voice

I see that these two pieces have been doing the rounds for some time or perhaps have recently been revived. Does anyone know if Chouinard has created new work over the past few years?

Author:  kurinuku [ Wed Dec 14, 2005 2:45 am ]
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A New Body Language, for the Present and for the Ages
by CLAUDIA LA ROCCO for the New York Times

"I am aiming for things that are permanent," she said emphatically in accented English. "If I put my work out there, I have to consider it to be great. It does not happen that, 10 years later, I think it's boring. No, never. Sorry."

published: December 11, 2005

Author:  kurinuku [ Thu Dec 15, 2005 3:49 pm ]
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Tapping Silver Toes and Heels
by JOHN ROCKWELL for the New York Times

How this solo works with a male protagonist would be fascinating to see, since in Ms. Mongrain's sovereign interpretation the movement seems so often quintessentially feminine, and the relation with Mr. Viveiros (he lifts her into a lotus position at the beginning and end; she cuddles in his protective arms) would take on a host of new connotations with two men.

published: December 15, 2005

Author:  kurinuku [ Thu Dec 22, 2005 8:26 am ]
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Kisses, Squeals, and Musical Floors
A visiting tribe from Montreal camps in New York
by DEBORAH JOWITT for the New York Times

Montreal-based choreographer Marie Chouinard is a master at delineating desire. In her 2003 Chorale, as in her 2000 Le Cri du Monde (seen here two years ago), we view her company as a tribe of dancers re-embodying primal urges. They walk on purposefully for each small section, take their places, and allow their inner animals to emerge, almost as if fulfilling ritual requirements.

published: December 16, 2005

Author:  Francis Timlin [ Sun Jan 20, 2013 3:58 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Marie Chouinard

Compagnie Marie Chouinard performs "The Rite of Spring" at the University of Washington's Meany Theatre, January 24-26, 2012. Michael Upchurch previews the performance for the Seattle Times.

Seattle Times

Author:  Francis Timlin [ Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Marie Chouinard

Spider Kedelsky previews Compagnie Marie Chouinard's January 24-26, 2013 performances at Seattle's Meany Theatre of "The Rite of Spring" for Crosscut.


Author:  Francis Timlin [ Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:32 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Marie Chouinard

In the Seattle Times, Michael Upchurch reviews Compagnie Marie Chouinard's performance at Seattle's Meany Hall on Thursday, January 24, 2013.

Seattle Times

Author:  Francis Timlin [ Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:24 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Marie Chouinard

In the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Mark Kanny reviews the September 27, 2013 performance of Compagnie Marie Chouinard at the Byham Theatre in Pittsburgh.


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