DANCE REVIEW

Idan Cohen and Hillel Kogan Warehouse 2, Jaffa Port August 15.

By ORA BRAFMAN
August 18, 2013 21:29
1 minute read.
‘WE LOVE ARABS.'

‘WE LOVE ARABS’ 370. (photo credit: Courtesy Idan Cohen)

 
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Two of the more talented independent choreographers shared an evening at the new dance venue –Warehouse 2.

Idan Cohen opened with a short solo, based on Songs of a Wayfarer, by Gustav Mahler and performed by Omer Astrachan.

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Astrachan, a good enough dancer, had difficulty owning the choreographic material, not in the technical sense, but in its artistic development. His execution seemed more like sketched rehearsal, than polished product with enough nuances, flow and syntax’s complexity. The solo is short and perhaps could do with further work and development.

Hillel Kogan, superb creator and performer premiered perhaps his best piece yet.We Love Arabs is a true masterpiece by all measures. I can’t think at the moment of a dance piece that is as witty, provocative, political and hilarious as that one.


Kogan on stage assumes a role of choreographer in the midst of preparation of a new piece. He shares his thoughts with the audience during the process and lets his body search for honest and politically correct ways to explain why he needs an Arab partner for the theme of the new piece – co existence. He shares aloud his indecisions, chatting insatiably with a straight face and tons of innocence, and the result is a true standup comedy. At the same time his jargon sends pointed arrows, mocking the idioms of the GaGa technique of Batsheva, using images and metaphors that may sound ridiculous to an outsider, such as: look for a way to connect your body to the space, and let the space find a way to connect to you.

Adi Boutrous (an Arab in the role of an Arab) was a terrific partner, challenging and interesting enough, to serve as the perfect side kick.

Kogan, is a bundle of talent oozing from each of his pores. He is a first rate dancer, actor with exquisite sense of ‘space,’ and superb sense of timing. This cohesive piece is by far the most brilliant choreographic adventure I have seen in years! I chuckled and laughed and admired his mind, originality, as well as his deep stage comprehension.

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