Wednesday, December 7, 2016

"Dance": a Lucinda Childs revival at The Joyce

Dance (1979) by Lucinda Childs,
presented in the second week of
Lucinda Childs Dance Company at The Joyce Theater
(photo: Sally Cohn)

I wonder if everyone feels that kick of anticipation whenever, after much agitation, the stage hangs empty in Lucinda Childs's Dance, the 1979 masterpiece now revived at The Joyce Theater. It's like being suspended high above the ground before your ride descends...or your parachute, hopefully, opens.

In Dance, the dozen skimming, twirling live dancers--and their looming predecessors in the Sol LeWitt film--create a hallucination so intense, do audacious that it wears down any rational desire for it to end. Gridded surfaces for dancing float, tilt at crazy angles, appear and disappear--as ghostly as the live and filmed dancers themselves in Philip Glass's whirlpool of music. And, later, the goddess herself--her image pure, as stately as an ancient temple--stands in floor-length raiment, arms flat against her thighs, staring out into the audience and freezing her votaries in place. We must give her her due. Brava to this dangerous woman!

Lucinda Childs Dance Company 's Program B--Dance--continues at The Joyce through December 11.  For schedule details and tickets, click here.

The Joyce Theater
175 Eighth Avenue (corner of 19th Street), Manhattan

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