Travelogue Update, Santos, Brazil, September 10

10 Sep

Much of the dance work we are seeing falls into “dance theatre” – conceptual, inclusive of text, using pedestrian movements; there is a notable European influence.    One exception was Christian Duarte’s “Hot 100 – The Hot One Hundred Choreographers.”  Duarte embodies movements from 100 choreographers who have influenced his work as a dancer (he is an exceptional performer).  We could most easily pick out bits of reference to Graham, Brown, Cunningham, Fosse, and Michael Jackson (among a few others), but less so to choreographers from other countries, and left the performance wondering who and what movements we would include in our own list of 100!  The performance spaces used for the Festival are all over the city and range from a traditional theatre to a gym (reminiscent of a Cunningham “Event”) to the inside of an old, abandoned building.

Wim Vandekeybus’ company performing on the first night:

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An informal gathering of choreographers, producers, and international participants provided us with time to meet Latin American colleagues, share information about touring and presenting dance, discuss similar challenges to building audiences for contemporary dance, and gain a better understanding of the opportunities for American choreographers in Latin America, including choreographic exchange possibilities and touring to larger festivals as well as smaller community centers.  Each day the festival has included dance programming for young audiences, an area of the U.S. dance field that is less visible than we see abroad.  Much can be learned about dance for young audiences here as well as shared by those U.S. artists who engage with these very special audiences.

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