Roy Assaf made his name as a dancer working closely with Emanuel Gat, an Israeli
choreographer of international stature based in France. This program established
him as a ripe choreographer as well.
The first piece, Six Years Later, is
a duet with Hadar Yunger-Harel, which demonstrated exceptional kinetic synergy,
as if two bodies were sharing one mind. Its beauty, nuances and intricate,
astute movements filled the stage with a magical charm.
Based largely on
consistent physical contact, or close proximity, Six Years creates unparalleled
intimacy between two people, sharing equal amounts of fortitude and
vulnerability. The delightful interplay of fluid passages between short scenes
of frame-by-frame mode allows focused observation of fleeting moods of intimacy,
alertness, insecurity and trust. An honest dialogue, devoid of frills meant to
Both play on a large range of intensity and inner
dynamics which finally explodes in a series of vibrating bodies under a
There is strong sense of awareness of proportions, and subtle
humor, even more apparent in the second piece, The Hill.
pertains to a song “Ammunition Hill,” written to commemorate a traumatic battle
in 1967 in which 36 paratroopers were killed by Jordanian soldiers.
a trio work danced by the terrific cast of Shlomi Biton, Yigal Furman and Assaf,
who used military parade tunes to set the mood. It played well with delicate
irony between the reverence of the lyrics and contemporary means centers on
different male kinship and camaraderie.
This program established Assaf as
one of the major emerging choreographic voices on our dance stages. His powerful
performance brought the audience to their feet for the long and rare standing
ovation of the year.