Dance with me

A friend sent me a link to the AXIS Dance Company. This innovative dance troupe “paved the way for a powerful contemporary dance form called physically integrated dance.” What this means in practice is that about half of the dancers are physically disabled.

It’s a really neat concept, and they do some very creative things. Until you’ve seen a woman spinning on the wheel of an occupied wheelchair lying on its side, you can’t really appreciate it. While many of the individual movements are fascinating to me, the actual performances don’t really interest me that much. I’m not sure if that’s a stylistic thing or if I’m just too much of a philistine to appreciate them.

I suspect that their work is more fun to perform than to watch. There’s nothing wrong with that, I have some very happy memories of performing such pieces myself in my history as a musician and dancer, but I feel that’s best interspersed with more audience oriented works. It’s okay to confuse or even bewilder the audience from time to time, but you shouldn’t lock them out.

On the other hand, perhaps that’s not what’s happening at all. Every clip I watched I had the feeling that there was a story being told that was just a bit beyond my ability to follow. Like I didn’t quite have the vocabulary to understand to language being used. It’s entirely possible that their target audience is simply more familiar with the tropes and techniques of modern dance than I am.

Either way, I’m glad they exist, and if I lived in the area I’d take some of their classes. Watching them really made me miss dancing. My preferred style was tap dance, but I’d be perfectly happy to try something new. Maybe I should get some tights and find something local, but if that fails I’m sure my tap shoes still fit.

About Leo Tarvi

Mostly fictional.

Posted on March 14, 2012, in Daily Post and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Hey Leo,

    Christy here from AXIS Dance Company. Thanks for the mention! I agree that sometimes modern dance does leave the audience at a distance. Saw you were interested in taking our classes, too bad we aren’t closer to you! We do tour quite a bit and often teach where we are – so might be worth keeping your eyes out for us in your area 🙂

    Warmly,
    AXIS Dance Company

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