Bocca and Ballet Argentino
June 2003 -- Teatro
its summer season, the Sistina Theater invited Julio Bocca who, accompanied
by a small group of dancers from the Ballet Argentino, the company he
has directed since 1997, presented Ana Maria Stekelman’s “Boccatango.”
In this ballet, which was recently a great success in Buenos Aires for
several months, dance numbers alternated with musical pieces – mainly
tango classics, lots of Carlos Gardel and Astor Piazzolla – which were
only played or sung. The show was thus quite varied and dynamic since
each danced piece was complete in itself. The main thread was tango and
its natural environment, Buenos Aires.
The curtain rose to the accompaniment of Carlos Gardel’s “Mi Buenos Aires
Querido.” The stage was initially occupied by a large movie screen on
which a brief documentary film on Buenos Aires was projected for the duration
of the song. The film showed the extent to which Argentines love tango,
which is not confined to nightclubs but is danced everywhere, mainly in
the streets –– as would never happen in Italy.
The screen was then removed and the singing (by Viviana Vigil and Alberto
Bianco) and dancing started. The performers danced solo, in couples
(man and woman or two men) and small groups. Academic technique blended
with typical tango steps in an interesting and harmoniously “contaminated”
Stage props were reduced to the minimum: table, bench, chair and ladder.
Disappointingly, Julio Bocca was not dancing nude as shown in advertising
photos. However, his world-famous leaps and turns were wonderful and plentiful.
He danced intense solos –– I should really say, several pas-de-deux with
the table and an especially beautiful and original one with the ladder.
His dances with Cecilia Figaredo were full of dramatic tension and acrobatic
movements. At one point, Figaredo, the only woman in the company, removed
her high-heeled shoes and performed a couple of contemporary dance solos
barefoot. The two soloists, Hernan Piquìn and Vincenzo Capezzuto, were
very good and athletic, as were the other dancers (Lisandro Casco, Miguel
Moyano, Lucas Oliva and Benjamin Parada).
The orchestra played from behind a screen and appeared only at the end.
It accompanied the whole show very well, and also performed a number of
short instrumental pieces.
The audience loved the show, and Julio Bocca reaped a personal triumph.
Edited by Jeff.
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