An invigoratingly fresh blend: Music and dance at The Reser

An invigoratingly fresh blend: Music and dance at The Reser

An invigoratingly fresh mix of dance and tunes by BodyVox and the Akropolis Reed Quintet celebrated the Roaring Twenties at the manufacturer-new Patricia Reser Centre for the Carrying out Arts on March 19. Taking part in for an enthusiastic audience that nearly crammed the freshly opened 550-seat corridor in Beaverton, the present delightfully lined an era when all the things from speakeasies to skyscrapers etched the headlines of newspapers gals bought the correct to vote fashion altered significantly and art types like surrealism and jazz acquired a measure of acceptance. 

Creative and witty choreography by creative directors Jamey Hampton and Ashley Roland directed the 9 BodyVox dancers in a sequence of vignettes that have been improved outstandingly by lights designer Mark LaPierre and video clip designer Alan Cline. Costumes developed by Roland incredibly evoked an era when flappers pushed in opposition to the obstacles for women.

Sponsored by Chamber Music Northwest, the Akropolis Reed Quintet accompanied each individual scene with fantastic preparations of audio from the ‘20s. The top-tier wind ensemble–consisting of oboist Tim Gocklin, clarinetist Kari Landry, saxophonist Matt Landry, bass clarinetist Andrew Koeppe, and bassoonist Ryan Reynolds–displayed their virtuosic prowess in a selection of jazz-inflected parts. 

The display opened with swagger, bodies going to the pulsating defeat of the Foxtrot movement from Dmitri Shostakovich’s Jazz Suite No. 1. Flappers and libation-infused admirers cavorted whilst rates from F. Scott Fitzgerald and Mae West had been projected towards the back again wall. Later on in the evening, the Jazz Suite’s Waltz movement underscored a black-and-white movie in which Salvatore Bonilla playfully explored the wardrobe of an upper-crust household. 

The most stunning piece on the program was a tribute to the Empire State Constructing, with dancers perched on leading of a lengthy wood beam–suggesting the iconic photograph of workers sitting down on a steel beam large over the cityscape. The dancers wore blue coveralls whilst displaying acrobatic moves to Francis Poulenc’s “Les Biches.” Then they shed their function dresses to reveal golden outfits and shimmied to the upbeat swing of Irving Berlin’s “Blue Skies.” Astounding!

'Lunch atop a skyscraper' by Charles C. Ebbets.
‘Lunch atop a skyscraper’ by Charles C. Ebbets.

In a extended, white costume, BodyVox dancer Andrea Parson kicked off a homage to the women’s suffrage movement, with tunes from Maurice Ravel’s Le Tombeau de Couperin. She was joined by her colleagues in a reflective set in which the males made use of hand-held lamps to manipulate the ladies like marionettes–until the women received the higher hand. The hypnotic new music of Satie’s “Gnossienne, No. 1”–followed by his light waltz “Je Te Vieux” (I Want You)–matched flawlessly with the dancers.

Commencing with the eco-friendly apple from René Magritte’s Son of Man portray in the background, the dance ensemble developed unusual formations that proposed the surreal movement. A person segment projected a dancer to the again wall and then warped her actions and even the floor in an undulating sample. In one more scene the dancers assembled themselves into a Leaning Tower of Pisa. For the duration of these segments the musicians played Splinter, a pleasant function published by Marc Mellits in 2020. 

Sponsor

White Bird Versa-Style Dance Company Patricia Reser Center Beaverton Oregon

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In the Discuss Uncomplicated Dance Wild section, we have been handled to a carousing get together scene in which outlier Bonilla was repeatedly tossed off the premises while Matt Landry played Scott Joplin’s renowned ragtime selection, “Solace,” on an upright piano. The carousing strike a pause when the piano participant was shot–only to be changed by one particular of the dancers who continued the piece. But then the audio results gentleman, Jamey Hampton was plunked, and the law enforcement arrived, ending the exciting. 

A nod to artwork deco was accompanied by a playful arrangement of George Gershwin’s “First Piano Prelude.” Men and gals sporting outfits splashed with newsprint frolicked to Gershwin’s bluesy “Second Piano Prelude,” and Skye Stouber held courtroom solo with the “Third Piano Prelude.”

In the Beauty and the Boss vignette, Stouber duetted expertly with Theresa Hanson even though the quintet jazzed it up with Duke Ellington’s “East Saint Louis Toodle-Oo.” 

The overall performance concluded with Le Fin Start and the quintet piping an arrangement of Gershwin’s American in Paris. It was a grand way to deliver the night to a shut, and Skye Stouber was honored with a bouquet of bouquets due to the fact this was his closing general performance with the firm.

If BodyVox and the Akropolis Reed Quintet can group up for this considerably enjoyable with the Roaring ‘20s, think of what they could do with a different decade like the ‘60s! There are quite a few arrangements of tunes by the Beatles, the Stones, Jimi Hendrix and other people that would be a blast to hear–perhaps one thing like Imani Winds composer Jeff Scott’s Fantasy on 1967–with the dance corporation sporting bellbottoms, tie dyes, and system sneakers. Groovy!

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James Bash enjoys writing for The Oregonian, The Columbian, Classical Voice North The us, Opera, and quite a few other publications. He has also published article content for the Oregon Arts Commission and the Grove Dictionary of American Audio, 2nd version. He gained a fellowship to the 2008 NEA Journalism Institute for Classical Audio and Opera, and is a member of the Audio Critics Affiliation of North The us.