By ORI J. LENKINSKI
Yasmeen Godder’s "Storm End Come" evokes a torrent of energy and excitement.
The sense that a storm is about to arrive is one that most animals intuitively
Whether it is the whining of a dog moments before thunder strikes
or that eerie yellow light that floods the sky just as raindrops begin to fall
when a tempest is on the way, everyone seems to know it.
scientific studies have been done on the crucial instants before the eye of a
storm takes shape. And though many anticipate these occurrences with fear,
storms can also evoke a great deal of excitement and energy.
Yasmeen Godder added herself to the list of people to take on the wily nature of
Her work Storm End Come, which was choreographed in
collaboration with Godder’s life partner Itzik Giuli, premiered in Tel Aviv and
has since toured extensively. Having recently returned from The Netherlands,
Godder and her gang will give local audiences an opportunity to take in the
storm before setting off once again.
Since the premiere of Storm End
Come, Godder has given birth, presented a new work for the Batsheva Dance
Company and taught workshops to participants around the world.
importance in the Israeli dance community cannot be underestimated. At a time
when a handful of voices dominated the scene, Godder virtually exploded into the
arena with her calculated wildness.
Upon completing a BA in New York
City, Godder returned to Israel with an agenda. Fully armed with an arsenal of
outrageous choreographic ideas, Godder touched down in Tel Aviv and got to work.
In New York, she won a prestigious Bessie Award for her piece I Feel Funny
Today. In the years that followed, her unconventional pieces, such as Strawberry
Cream and Gunpowder and I’m Mean, I Am generated tidal waves of criticism and
admiration. It didn’t take long for international audiences to catch a whiff of
what Godder was cooking up in Israel. For the past 10 years, she has been
presented by the most prestigious venues and festivals and has shown her work
countless times. Her semester-long workshop for pre-professional dancers has
steadily grown in attendance over the past several years. She has also initiated
a program for teenagers, housed in the Jewish-Arab Center in Jaffa, which uses
improvisation and dance as a vehicle to promote tolerance and understanding
Godder’s approach to dance has changed the way many see the
art of choreography. To see her perform is to witness a true artist command the
stage. Her use of vocalization, facial expressions and unusual movements has
defined a new genre of performance, one that is less concerned with beauty and
is more willing to reveal blood and guts. Her influence can be seen in the
creations of many local and international artists.
Storm End Come began
in July of 2010 as a site-specific production for the Opera Estate Festival in
Godder went on to co-produce a fuller expression of the piece,
which was shown in a distillery with three bodies: The Grand Theater in
Groningen, The Netherlands; Culturescapes in Basel, Switzerland; and Centra Per
La Scena Contemporanea in Bassano Del Grappa, Italy (home to the Opera Estate
Festival). Though program notes on each work are available, it is often
difficult to discern the exact intended meaning of Godder’s work, as many ideas
are presented abstractly. Godder is gifted at building and subsequently
unraveling complex psychological states.
This is Godder’s ninth
evening-length work and is performed by six artists.
Storm End Come will
run at the Suzanne Dellal Center on April 27 and 28 at 9 p.m. For more dates and
information, visit www.yasmeengodder.com. For tickets, call (03) 510-5656 or