Empowerment and Animalism Dug Up From Earthdance


Valerie Green channels feminine power. Two solos showcased her articulate, fearless, intelligent dancing. In Naked Heart, a collaboration with Mariko Tanabe, Green threw herself into intricacies of phrase variation. Whipping her Pre-Raphaelite hair into animalistic frenzy and driven by urgent, grinding hips, she seemed a courtesan imprisoned by the solitude of her sex, before pausing to recall serenity. The naturalism and ritualistic quality of Loss and Desire illuminated her roots as the daughter of a Serbian mother and as a member of the Erick Hawkins troupe. After performing an invocation with water, Green lumped piles of earth into the approximate form of a human body while Gypsy music crescendoed. Planting herself in the dirt and holding a stone aloft, she became both mourner and symbol of hope. A trio danced by Ashley Smith, Jessica Weiss, and Jill Causa, Echo of a Trace, captured an elemental feminine energy in what might have been Green’s retelling of the Arachne myth.

This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on February 8, 2005

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