New Dances 2010, Thodos Dance Chicago‘s 10th annual showcase of company member’s choreography was presented at Columbia College last weekend. The evening consisted of nine premieres — eight from TDC dancers and one from guest choreographers Stephanie Martinez Bennitt and Francisco Aviña. Some were great, some were good, some had potential and some didn’t quite work — as it should be when combining veteran dance creators with first timers and less seasoned choreographers — but the dancers’ focus, talent and enthusiasm were the real stars of the show.
Stand outs: dancers Natalie Tursi (petite with a powerful presence and technique) and Natalie Williams (beautiful long legs); Quieting the Clock by Martinez Bennitt and Aviña with its intricate partnering and wonderful imagery (*see pic below of dancers literally creating the image of a ticking clock); versus by Joshua Manculich had great costumes (loved the hoods!), lighting and an interesting contrast of stillness and pulsing and softness with intense yearning; and Wade Schaaf’s (Monet) haystack-inspired triad of solos Dancer, Net performed by Jackie Stewart that had her encased in fabric netting costumes (designed by Nathan Rohrer) and evolving from a statuesque Grecian goddess to a hardcore punkrocker in a chicken coop (set to Bjork, who will forever evoke birdness) to a quirky, almost featherless dying swan.
Kudos to all the hard work put in by Melissa and her crew!