dance review 88.
(photo credit: )
Les Grands Ballets Canadiens De Montreal
On the big outdoor stage at Suzanne Dellal, the fabulous Les Grands Ballets Canadiens De Montreal company supplied one of the more satisfying performances of the season, showcasing two creations by some of the most talented choreographers around.
The presentation of Noces by Belgian artist Stijn Celis with Mauro Bigonzetti was an inspired choice, matching two totally different peas that actually belong to same pod; both are successful, contemporary choreographers with similar approaches to the relation between sound and movement and who lean on underlying content and treat spatial compositions as a magical playground.
The Canadian company's wonderful dancers did justice to both demanding works, each of which requires a very different ambiance.
Noces, set to Stravinsky's "Les Noce," relates in subtle ways to Nijinska's original 1923 rendition, which based the groundbreaking dance on ancient Russian wedding rites - apparent here, too. Celis kept that in mind but created an intriguing work with his vibrant, rich and unusually tight original vocabulary, performed with intensity and incredible energy by the two dozen dancers.
Energy is also a key word in Bigonzetti's popular Cantata, based on traditional and original music from southern Italy, with arrangements set by the musical group Assurd. Four barefoot, wild-looking women perform onstage throughout the piece.
No other choreographer caught the Mediterranean spirit of rural southern Italy, with its passionate, somewhat out-of-hand, often deeply emotional existence. Bigonzetti managed to create an attractive, heart-warming dance that takes the chauvinist environment to its extremity - yet keeps it human and humorous. This particular rendition is tighter than earlier versions, keeping its actions on the fast track like no other company before it.
It was a most fulfilling evening with food for thought and food for soul.