It's Hell in Here Opening
I am going to talk a little bit about It's Hell In Here, but there are no spoilers ahead. Last night was one of the most important moments of this whole festival. It's Hell In Here, by Abigail Browde and her comrades from NYC, opened at Nth 4th. And it's weird. It's an excellent show, with very strong performers, interesting ideas, bravery and, maybe most importantly, willingness to push boundaries. The line (if anyone thinks there is one) between dance and theatre is erased. In fact, the very idea of what "qualifies" as dance is being questioned. They play a lot with space. Where is it ok to perform within the building? Everywhere! The show made me vaguely tense as I watched, and more and more curious to understand what was going on. It's not that there is no story- there is. I have the definite sense that the creator/performers care very much about the audience, and about communicating something. However, the show is non-linear, poetic in the sense that it has lots of gaps for you to fill in with your own imagination and lots of links you must make for yourself. By the time I started to grasp the full meaning of the show, and put some pieces together,it was ending.
It seemed to me that some audience members were confused or didn't know what to make of it. "What was that?" Lots of people liked it but couldn't tell exactly why. A friend compared the show to the band Sonic Youth. I agree, but I think you'd have to see it to know what he means. It is definitely a show that works on your head, not so much on your heart. By that I mean, it did not affect me viscerally, but definitely intellectually. But more than any other show in the festival thus far, it has been the impetus for conversation. Whatever people thought or didn't get, they are talking about it. This is one of the most important goals of Revolutions.
Tonight is a $5 student rush, so I hope we get a lot of audience from Theatre & Dance. I think this is just the kind of thing students need to see.
I also dropped in again on ONE in rehearsal. It looks like a dark vaudeville dream leaked out onto the stage. On top of their show being cool, they are incredibly nice people.(This is me perpetuating a stereotype about Canadians, but dammit I think they are all really nice!) I am totally excited for this weekend. A newly retooled Catgut Strung Violin too, which is almost sold out, rounds out the last shows of this festival.
Then we will all take a 3 day nap.