Revisiting Cedar Lake

May 22, 2012

In college, I worked as an usher for Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet. As amazing as the dancers were, especially in Ohad Naharin’s Decadance (the main attraction that season), you can only watch the same show so many times, while standing on the sidelines and intermittently guiding people to the bathroom, before it gets a little old. I took a break from watching the company after that, but the impact of those performers—impeccable technicians who seem capable of, well, just about anything—stayed with me.

Based on what I saw this past weekend at The Joyce Theater, where Cedar Lake is in the midst of a two-week, two-program season, that impact has only gotten stronger. The dancers are even more whatever-they-need-to-be-in-the-moment: pedestrian or acrobatic, delicate or brazen, stealthy or explosive or any shade in between. I only wish that there had been more diversity in the choreography, which, in this lengthy program of works by Crystal Pite, Hofesh Shechter, and Angelin Preljocaj, tended toward the dark, the stormy, and the over-serious. Maybe Program B, continuing at the Joyce through May 27, will deliver more variety. —Siobhan Burke


Pictured: Cedar Lake in
Crystal Pite’s
Grace Engine.

Photo by Julieta Cervantes, courtesy Cedar Lake.