Korzo Theater, Theater aan het Spui
The Hague, Netherlands
November 8?25, 2000
Reviewed by Helma Klooss
The residential city of The Hague houses, besides the Netherlands Dance Theater, two important dance festivals: the Holland Dance Festival, coming up November 2001, and CaDance, with which it alternates years. CaDance celebrated its tenth anniversary in November with nineteen premieres. Other multi-cultural dance performances were set in small festivals in the city as well, making The Hague the Dance City of the Netherlands. This year?s theme was “The Haguers dance!” and many residents were photographed dancing in the streets. THE photos were exhibited in theaters throughout the city.
CaDance offers young Dutch choreographers opportunities to develop their ideas and create new work. Leo Spreksel, who initiated the festival, presented a continuous program with performances, dance parties, exhibitions, readings and interviews on six stages in the city. The festival opened adventurously in the huge white City Hall of The Hague with Van God Los!, depicting Greek gods ruling from above and holding by strings a variety of modern and classical dancers, hip- hoppers and skaters. This funny piece marked the choreographic debut of Tessa Cooke, one of Jiri Kylian?s talented former dancers. Cooke, who left Netherlands Dans Theater after nine years, is one of the four NDT dancers who launched a choreographic career at the festival.
Besides Cooke, Japanese dancer Megumi Nakamura recreated her former roles on stage in her solo Forgetting Room/Act of Remembering 18 Parts. With clear Japanese simplicity and high-tech lighting and sound composition by her companion Saori Kakizawa, she portrayed emotions such as fear, despair and anger. This beautiful dancer is radiant on stage; Jirí Kylián is choreographing a new solo performance for her, which will premiere in Japan in the fall.
Another former NDT member, Dylan Newcomb, presented his solo Static/Full Circle, Part One (of three parts) as the concept of a life journey. He danced and composed the music of Static, an intellectual concept for which he also designed two huge rotating cubes. We hardly recognize his inward-directed movements because he moves only within the inner cube. A film with a lot of text is projected on the outer cube?all memories of a young, then middle-aged, then older person.
One of the best performances of the more established choreographers was Emio Greco & PC?s: Double Points: Three?Titulo de Trabajo. In changing rhythms, three dancers move in often-diagonal patterns across the stage. Their compelling movements?for all three the same?consist of swinging their heads and arms while their speed slows. It is combined with an impressive light show and sound composition and left a strong impact.
Diane Elshout and Frank Händeler?s ‘Boca, inspired by religious rites practiced in South America, expressed the Candomble rituals with elegance and sensuality. The attractive dancers set the atmosphere in a field of corn by moving and calling out Elshout/Händeler’s trademark duets were full of desire and intimacy. Unfortunately, the piece ended too abruptly, breaking the mood and our fantasies.