The show began with a loud scream that had a few of us jump from our seats. The scream was followed up by an ominous soundtrack that quite frankly, captivated me right from the beginning! Six fierce urban and contemporary dancers entered the space and gave us 50 minutes of mostly non-stop movement. Black Or Ange at the SummerWorks festival is a beautifully choreographed dance production by choreographer Malgorzata Nowacka. The level of technique is very strong and the partnered work left me breathless.
Choreography is more than just movement. Nowacka demonstrated this by her creative use of light and sound in the choreography. I particularly enjoyed when the dancers would move with flashlights or the fan. The introduction of the iPod was a nice touch in the beginning of the show and it definitely piqued my interest.
In addition to the props, the speed at which the dancers were dancing was exhilarating. At times I would notice that I was holding my breath so when that meditation scene occurred later in the dance, I was grateful for that quiet pause. It gave me a chance to reflect on what I had seen thus far.
As a dancer, I can appreciate how hard it can be to dance for as long as the dancers did. As an audience member, I enjoyed watching the somewhat chaotic and animalistic movements released on stage. There were moments when I started to wonder what was happening. Why were they pushing each other? Why were they so angry? Where did that kiss come from? What did it mean now that they are all in orange?
Eventually, I let go of those questions and enjoyed the sheer athleticism that Black Or Ange had to offer. From the gorgeous leg extensions, to the floor work, the dancers made the dance look effortless.
Contemporary dance, especially abstract contemporary dance, may not sit well with those who enjoy text-based productions. For the dance lovers however, you don’t want to miss Black Or Ange.
Black Or Ange plays at The Theatre Centre Mainspace (1115 Queen Street West)
Monday August 11, 7:30pm
Tuesday August 12, 9:30pm
Wednesday August 13, 5:00pm
Friday August 15, 10:00pm
Saturday August 16, 2:30pm
Sunday August 17, 12:00pm
All individual SummerWorks tickets are $15 at the door (cash only).
Tickets are available online at http://summerworks.ca
By phone by calling the Ticketwise Call Centre at 416-907-0468, in person at the SummerWorks Info Booth – located at The Theatre Centre (1115 Queen Street West) August 7th-17th from 10AM – 7PM (Advance tickets are $15 + service fee)