Thursday, November 1, 2018

Forever hunger: Kimberly Bartosik at BAM Fisher

Joanna Kotze in Kimberly Bartosik's I hunger for you
(photo: Jim Coleman)

Lighting designer Roderick Murray's fluorescent tubes hang from the ceiling inside BAM Fisher's Fishman Space, colder and more severe than stalactites. Two dancers--Christian Allen and Lindsey Jones--step into the bare space of Kimberly Bartosik's I hunger for you. You can almost hear raptor wings, so forceful is the way they will lunge and beat and spin against the air. Arms lifting and rotated. Heavy breath audible. Heads and chins tilted upward. Torsos arching as they drop to a knee.

Burr Johnson, Dylan Crossman and Joanna Kotze--raptors, too, or perhaps angels, if angels have feet to strike mountainous earth--come in and churn and lash against the empty space as well. Back and forth, they cross it, overlapping in time and close pathways, until their labors clearly take a toll. Watching them, too, provides an initial sensation of exhilaration followed by exertion. When they stop--just stop and stand and shift inside and gasp--you feel the same internal wooziness, everything inside one's own body saying, "Hold up. Can we just settle back into order?"

I hunger for you plays with the risk of release--the kind of dropping of form and letting go that we experience in extremes of sensual and spiritual ecstasy--without guarantee of connection. Or guarantee that connection achieved will stay or will satisfy. A partner backs off or quietly quits the space entirely. The one remaining might freeze in a pose of hopelessness--arms wrenched forward from a torso bent as if in abject submission.

Much of the inspiration for the piece comes from the choreographer's religious upbringing, and it's interesting that she has cast her own child, Dahlia Bartosik-Murray, as a silent witness to some moments of Kotze's dancing as well as, later, a figure of release, coursing around the space like a wild filly.

Choreography: Kimberly Bartosik in collaboration with the dancers
Music: Sivan Jacobovitz, with arrangement by Kimberly Bartosik
Costume design: Harriet Jung
Sound Engineering: James Bigbee Garver
Dramaturgy: Melanie George

I hunger for you continues a sold-out run through Saturday with performances at 7:30pm. For information, click here.

Also, Friday's audience is welcome to an informal post-show discussion, facilitated by Melanie George with Bartosik and company in BAM Fisher's Lower Lobby.

BAM Fisher
321 Ashland Place, Brooklyn
(map/directions)

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DISCLAIMER: In addition to my work on InfiniteBody, I serve as Senior Curatorial Director of Gibney. The postings on this site are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views, strategies or opinions of Gibney.

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