Arianne MacBean's dance-theater Big Show Co. scrutinizes the creative process
Verbal language entered here as fragmentary phrases or single words, which acquired meaning in the way they are spoken, screamed, thrown about, casually chained to each other. At one point they simply disappeared into sound that is part of pure physical frustration.
In the opening passage, both Eugene and Carson seemed encased in their own worlds. He stood, and in Butoh-like fashion incrementally opened his arms and shifted his balance ever so slowly. You had to keep looking to see the moves. In contrast, the robotic Carson jerked herself like a mechanical doll onto the ground and up again. Attwell and Brad Culver slowly worked their way across the stage on their backs. The contrast between vertical and horizontal planes suggested a self-contained space that changed very slowly. But then these isolated beings tried to connect, and raced around trying to catch a hand like a lifeline. In twos, they were restrained even as they reached out. That section went on too long. Despite the constant shifting of partners, these parts did not accumulate. More effective was they way they shouted fragments, or single words that would make a sentence, at each other. It all started with Attwell's silent scream. *