A very good year

Inbal Pinto and Avshalom Pollack, the celebrated dance duo, return to Israel with their newest work ‘Rashes’

pinto pollack311 (photo credit: gadi dagon)
pinto pollack311
(photo credit: gadi dagon)
Regardless of how long we have been out of school, each summer brings with it a sense of endings.
While those of us who aren’t in high school don’t toss away notebooks and say goodbye to our lockers, there is a flow to the school year that stays with us for life. As such, summer time is a great opportunity to reflect on our recent accomplishments.
The dynamic duo Inbal Pinto and Avshalom Pollack, now on break after a very intense season, have every reason to look back with pride on this past year’s dealings. For one, they have a new baby to celebrate. And beyond the expansion of their lovely family, their company has thrived, reaching new audiences and new heights.
If this year had to have a title for Pinto and Pollack, it would be “Homecomings.” Although the company performed its regular repertory, Oyster and Shaker, in the past months, the two main events of this past school year involved transferring international pieces to Israeli stages.
At the end of 2009, Pinto and Pollack brought Rushes to Tel Aviv.
They had created the piece in collaboration with Robbie Barnett from the phenomenally bendy dancers of Pilobolus Dance Company in Connecticut. Back in their home studio in the Suzanne Dellal Center, armed with their trusted cast of dancers, Pinto and Pollack expanded the evening to include excerpts from several other works, which blended seamlessly into the already dream-like atmosphere of Rushes.
Famed actor Yossi Pollack, Avshalom’s father, joined the already established cast for Rushes Plus. The presence of the elder Pollack on stage thrilled audiences in an April performance, his first, and brought Rushes Plus to a new level.
In May, Pinto and Pollack presented Rushes to the National Center for the Performing Arts in Beijing and received exuberant reviews.
Then, as part of the Curtain Up Festival 2009, Pinto and Pollack presented Trout. This work was made while the company was in residency in Stavanger, Norway.
Inspired by the cold, Scandinavian winter, Trout unveiled a darker side of the duo’s imagination. Whereas their previous works had been colorful and nostalgic, Trout was dreary and abstract.
“Each piece is so different from the others,” explained Pinto.
“Wrapped, Oyster, Hydra… they are all different from each other.”
Three walls of the stage were rigged with microphones, the floor was covered in inches of water and eerie music by The Kitchen Orchestra filled the stage with a delightful tension.
Unfortunately, Trout was a oneweek engagement, as the musicians had to go home to Norway. “We have a special relationship with Trout,” said Pollack in an interview with The Jerusalem Post, “because we had to leave it behind.”
The company recently returned from several performances of Oyster at the prestigious American Dance Festival in Durham, North Carolina. Now, Pinto and Pollack are taking a well-deserved breather, recharging their creative batteries and playing with their two kids.
They will open the new season with an audition for male dancers at the end of August. In the fall months, the Inbal Pinto and Avshalom Pollack Dance Company will return to Stavanger with Rushes Plus.
As for their future plans, the duo did not want to give away any secrets. “We are the same people who are drawn to the things we are drawn to,” said Pinto. “We aren’t changing radically from production to production. We are looking for things we never did before: new keys and new ways of expressing ourselves.”