Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Three Reasons Why Theatre Lovers Should See Eifman

Nicole Losurdo is the Auditorium Theatre's Senior Director of Education and holds a Masters Degree in Educational Theatre  from New York University.


Three Reasons Theatre Lovers Should See The Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg’s production of Don Quixote, or Fantasies of a Madman, this week at the Auditorium Theatre:
  1. Thoughtful use of dramatic conventions. Eifman wows the theatregoer with his expert use of the stage and theatrical conventions. He fearlessly creates a space for the ballet to unfold in a way that mirrors a traditional theatre director. He considers and plays with light and shadow to create very specific spaces and places much more intimate than most story ballets: small, hot, vast, drafty, and eerie. His use of levels draws the eye across the stage, up and back again, forcing the viewer’s to dance across the stage in a seamless sweep with and against the choreography. Visually stunning, his costume choices are interesting and used to enhance the development of character and story. When considering the range of movement dance costumes need to be designed to accommodate, like scissor sharp jumps and high leg extensions, one sits in amazement watching the Eifman dancer work their costume as an extension of the character’s body. Boris Eifman’s work has a dramatic and emotional charge, and it is fueled by his theatrical sensibility. It is exciting ballet. Which brings me to number 2...
  2. Boris Eifman is a master of storytelling. Unlike a more traditional story ballet filled with expositional gesture, Eifman delicately and expertly reveals dramatic and emotional moments through dramaturgic movement. Eifman does not wish to merely tell a story through movement, but he wishes to share a story by examining the mystery of the human soul, bringing the audience to a “philosophical contemplation of life” through movement. He has something to say in his ballets, social parallels to draw, important ideas to express. Eifman’s curiosity permeates through his ballets in a way that forces his audience to do the same, to wonder and grapple with larger questions and issues relevant in the here and now – not just in the moment of the ballet or in the Fantasies of a Madman
  3. The Eifman Ballet is just cool. Don Quixote, or Fantasies of a Madman takes place in an insane asylum, not your typical backdrop for a story ballet. But, I would also argue that the Eifman Ballet is not your typical ballet company. Sure, they can plié, arabesque, and grand jeté with the best of them; the company’s technical ability is even evident to non-dance enthusiast’s sensibility, but Eifman’s dancers also radiate a realness of emotion and expression – almost as genuinely as a method actor. You are pulled into their performance and intrigued by what you see at every moment. 

No comments:

Disqus for Auditorium Theatre Blog