I Can’t Get Ekaterina Kondaurova Out of My Mind

April 17, 2008

She’s the ultimate Forsythe dancer—wildly articulate, casually slinky, visibly reckless. She shows the pleasure of his work. She danced three of the four pieces on the Kirov’s Forsythe program at City Center. The last one, In the Middle Somewhat Elevated, well, she just took it away. Even when she wasn’t dead center, you couldn’t help but watch her. While a couple was dancing downstage right, she was upstage left in the shadows with her back to us, but you could see her move. When she turned around, she slunk and swaggered toward them like a snake. This girl spells trouble, I thought. But what a glorious kind of trouble! At the height of an extension, she’ll take a breath and break the line for just a second before bringing the leg down.

    To watch her is to understand Forsythe. She’s articulate—almost disjointed—in every part of her body, but she provides her own continuity. She saunters in, looking like nothing’s going on, and then launches into the wildest stuff, but not like a steam engine—she uses a full range of dynamics. She’s tall, unapologetic, and obviously game for anything. (And she was a “25 to Watch” in our January issue.) Toward the end of In the Middle, a small smile hovered on her face—not really a smile, but the look of relishing what she was doing. She was at that point where the dancing just takes over and she was having a blast.