Uncharted Terrain

Forti, who performed in this church when it first became a home for dance in the '60s, brought a clutch of women to join her in a three-part improvisation. In the process she calls Logomotion, words and movements express almost simultaneously what the senses pick up. The women are sensitive in this kind of free association, but Forti—alone and in a close-weaving duet with kindred improviser Carmela Hermann—is matchless.

Gray-haired, soft-bodied, pliant, Forti's part earth mother, part innocent, part sophisticated wit. Riffing on words lifted from the dictionary and whatever else crosses her fertile mind, she dances-talks on, say, the deliciousness of fish heads. She feels her way into the shapes and processes she talks of, groping for the word, the feeling. Cells split, and her body stretches in two directions. Always herself, the observer, she also becomes the groundwater she describes as it oozes through flattened leaves.

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