Dance

Taiwanese Choreographer's Craft Is Bound By Its Own Beauty

Nai-Ni Chen's Unbroken Thread feels like a big dream with "scary" archetypal elements that actually exhilarate rather than terrify. Dancers are secreted within or attached to a mass of thick, knotted ropes (designed by Myung Hee Cho), spilling from the theater's overhead grid, that become props, delineations of space, definitions of relationship. Throughout life's passages—from birth through death, movingly depicted—the dancers never truly break their invisible interconnections. Similarly, Chen's choreography and her troupe can't escape the beauty we've come to expect of them. (Count the number of "Ah!"s you hear—or breathe—after dances such as Incense or Raindrops.) There's unusually discordant, sometimes violent material in Unbroken Thread—black, dreadlocked Eddie Stockton, one of Chen's newest performers, falls victim to a highly stylized lynching—yet the movement's formal integrity and opulent presentation consistently put audiences at ease. Is this loveliness a blessing or a bind? —Eva Yaa Asantewaa


Details

Dusan Tynek Dance Theatre
The Kitchen
Closed

Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company
Baruch Performing Arts Center
Through December 14

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Succumbing to Glimpses of a Poet's Soul and a Closet

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