A response to Odeon by Ephrat Asherie Dance
Performed by: Manon Bal, Teena Marie Custer, Val “Ms. Vee” Ho, Linda”LaNaija”Madueme, Matthew “Megawatt” West, Ousmane “Omari Mizrahi” Wiles
With Live Musicians: Eduardo Belo, Vitor Goncalves, Sergio Krakowski, Angel Lau
photo credit: Matthew Murphy
- This pre-show music is cute or whatever. The Vogueing beat element in it could be stronger.
- I understand you have to encourage the audience sometimes but this encouragement feels like over compensation.
- I haven’t seen stepping in a long time. This rudimentary execution could be complicated like the live music.
- The masonite boards under the lighting gives a basement linoleum-floor-party-feel.
- I’m glad the company is mostly women!
- So far, not much depth in Odeon. It’s groovy. More (non-structured) play would lead to ecstasy or maximum pleasure.
- The softer movement and slowing down of time and space is effective, especially when it’s in the “in between” of things. (A duet ends while a trio enters from stage right with an Africanist rhythm.)
- Camille A. Brown’s “Black Girl: Linguistic Play” comes to mind. Not completely a good or bad thing. On stage, does live music elevate social dance forms or not? (The piano in “Linguistic Play” was boring and maybe a misstep.)
- This pas de deux between Ephrat and Omari is dope. Wish it were longer just to see how this B-Girl and Voguer can fuck up some shit. Nonetheless, I love brevity—it keeps everything alive because you have to keep trying to catch it, not miss it.
- Damn, sitting stage right far from the musicians, I can’t feel the music. Are they not mic’d properly?
- This may be why I’m not into so much.
- The softer slowing down looks like a pause now. Keep dancing. This choreographic mechanism is starting to annoy me.
- The silence doesn’t help either.
- The gloomier moment of this trio and shadow play on the black scrim feels like last call. I would be satisfied if Odeon ended here.
- Come through Omari with that slinky Catwalk.
- Definitely could use some more Vogueing in Odeon. No shade, that could have been disastrous though.
- Another cute mini pas de deux. This is where the “tricks” should be. Not sure if bringing these social dance forms together have found sophistication in the movement yet. I see the individuality but where is the new language created from them?
- Can joy and exuberance be soulless?
- I don’t feel their joy and exuberance out here in the audience.
- Oh, and, the two dancers entering from the audience to start the show was an afterthought. I’m waiting for the moment when they come back out to the audience.
- Omari is doing his duckwalk. He’s about to Vogue the house down!
- Nah, what a shame. Ephrat should have given him a solo. His hands/arm control is exquisite.
- That is a let down.
- Okurr for getting trade together with that gestural finger point.
- This head ticking dialogue is interesting. Again, didn’t last long enough to go anywhere.
- This must be the choreographic problem Lauren Warnecke mentioned in the Chicago Tribune. I agree, this didn’t work for me either. If Ephrat is going for what seems to be a volta (turn in thought), singing or nudity or balloon animals (Baby Trump) or … would’ve been better options.
- The accordion player with solos are dope. Maybe the best section in Odeon. These should have came sooner. I’m invested in these.
- I’m ready for this dance to end.
- If virtuosity is to take me to the sublime, I need more virtuosity.
- Okay, if I see one more canon in this choreography; I’m going to impale my eyes with this pen!
- I see Omari’s duckwalk. I want to see him get his 10s.
- Linda’s solo reminds me of birds that can’t fly. This image has been recurring to me lately.
- Odeon could’ve been 45 or 50 minutes long.
- I appreciate what Ephrat Asherie Dance did. I wonder how long the process was. Another year into movement research and experimentation, and this could be even more than what it is now.
- Val’s comedic moment in the bow was sweet.
- [Angel Lau is cute!]
- The vibrancy in Odeon is fresh.
J’Sun Howard is a PRJ Guest Editor.