Black Fairytale 370.
(photo credit: Christoffer Askman)
Yossi Berg and Oded Graf premiered Black Fairytale within the Hot Dance
The work was co-produced with two Danish theaters. The couple,
who tour extensively, came for a short visit before they go back to greener
pastures, where the creative process is appreciated in more concrete
Their dance theater piece echoes the themes of their previous
works: the clash of fantasy with social norms, and politics with conventions –
only to find that movement and text have inherent issues of their
Each member of the international cast brings their individual
quality to the piece, yet Berg’s presence dominates. Not that his dancing is
extraordinary brilliant; on the contrary, there is inherent awkwardness to his
moves. However, his sensitivities are captivating, and one can almost see the
wheels in his head turn. He is smart, loose and consciously accentuates his
Black Fairytale starts with dancers singing simple, optimistic
parade slogans: keep on going, live the moment, live it strong. Later on the
dancers will experience elation, prompted by love, finding the light bestowed
upon them by a preacher, or having a revelation on top of Jerusalem’s Western
Wall; realizing that the people on both sides look similar.
But then the
elation crumbles, leaving room for eye-opening disillusion. In a mesmerizing
finale parade, the cast tip-toe ceremoniously on a pre-marked trail, to the
climaxing rhythms of Ravel’s Bolero, each representing a character from
childhood fables by carrying a suggestive prop. With each stride they shed their
individuality – the high price of conformity.
Berg and Graf supplied
fine, communicative dancing and razor sharp, intricately layered,
masquerading-as-cliché texts, wrapped in astute awareness, with a delightful wink.