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National Theater Ballet Manheim (Germany)
On its first visit to Israel, the National Theater Ballet of Manheim presented two works by its co-artistic directors - Kevin O'Day and Dominique Dumais - containing similar traits of style and vocabulary.
The repertoire of Dumais's "Broken Verse" and O'Day's "Brandenburg" have roots imbedded in neo-classical ballet, overlapping with a more contemporary lexicon. Yet both creations are rather conservative in nature, suggesting that the company hasn't formed yet a unique artistic imprint.
"Broken Verse," set to music by Eric Cadesky and Arvo Part, opened with a startling solo by a male dancer endowed with a strong presence who deployed deconstructive movements with erratic energy. He expressed wild rage, vulnerability, pain and impressive dancing - which unfortunately didn't retain its strength later on.
O'Day's work, set to J.S.Bach's Brandenburg concerti no.1, 2 and 3, is a plotless dance, aimed to display virtuoso dancing. For the most part, the dancers met expectations and obviously enjoyed performing this richly detailed work. The work was weakened by several choreographic decisions, but its Achille's heal was the group's diversity of backgrounds and skills, which interfered with meticulous precision needed for this music.