The dancers appear and disappear between a split curtain of white panels. Projected onto this is a virtual copy of the curtain. From its cracks, an elephant materializes to lumber across the stage; an elderly woman leads a string of kindergartners out one opening and in another. With the projected feet seeming to touch the actual floor, Montalvo creates an astonishing frieze. Action shot on a white floor can show dancers climbing the walls. Muscular Bobo Pani seems to hang by his teeth from a woman's skirt.

The dancing melds styles. Associate choreographer Dominique Hervieu's solo has the dynamics of popping. The charming Merlin Nyakam from Cameroon woos aloof Joelle Iffrig with an exuberant mating display of foot- stamping, chanting, and body-slapping. When she finally joins him, he chases her offstage, and his taped image lugs her away. Mélanie Lomoff's on pointe; Walid Boumhani does some sensational electric boogying; Laurent Chedri pirouettes on his head; voluptuous Chantal Loïal slyly turns her back and her buttocks talk to us.


Tanztheater Wuppertal
Brooklyn Academy of Music

Truus Bronkhorst and Marien Jongewaard
Danspace St. Markís

Compagnie Montalvo-Hervieu
Joyce Theater

Paradise, then, is an amiable circus without cages or nets. Dance forms lie down together, and the goat frolics past the tiger. No underpants in sight.

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