Dance Review: Roy Assaf creations

A review of Roy Assaf's dance presentation at the Suzanne Dellal theater on December 29.

Roy Assaf's 'The Hill' 370 (photo credit: Courtesy PR)
Roy Assaf's 'The Hill' 370
(photo credit: Courtesy PR)
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 impress onlookers.
Both play on a large range of intensity and inner dynamics which finally explodes in a series of vibrating bodies under a spell.
There is strong sense of awareness of proportions, and subtle humor, even more apparent in the second piece, The Hill.
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.
It’s 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.