Vortex Temporum

Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker is one of the contemporary choreographers I most admire. I discovered her accidentally, through my love of contemporary music. The first time I saw her work was at Brooklyn Academy of Music, when her dance company, Rosas, presented Drumming, performed to the seminal  percussive work of the same name by Steve Reich. I already loved that piece of music. I left, however, loving the choreographer just as much. The musicians were on the stage with the dancers and the movement in the piece was thrilling. This was in 2001, and over the years I continued to attend every performance at BAM, thrilling when I saw her name in the Next Wave Festival program. Flash forward to 2013, when I attended En Atendant and Cesena.  I was admittedly thrown for a loop when I was exposed to the new look and feel of her work in those pieces.  Last night at BAM, when I watched the performance of Vortex Temporum, I found myself finally beginning to respond to the new level of brilliance and complexity in her latest choreography. There is a very refined, distilled subtlety that requires an intense blend of both listening and watching. I find myself working harder to enter the space of the performance than I did with her earlier work. When she speaks about her inspiration, I am blown away by her intensely focused process. Knowing how she created the movement, combined with her deep understanding of the music, really helps me admire it all the more. Last night, it was the incredible music of Gérard Grisey, performed by the talented musicians of Ictus. Both composer and choreographer took us on a journey through time — in all of its dimensions. As for me, it is just going to take time to let go of the distinct style of her past performances and let my favorite choreographer take me into the future she envisions as she further explores movement and music. I trust her completely. She knows what she is doing, and it is good for me to allow my previous tastes in dance to be stretched.

BAM Next Wave Festival 2016
Vortex Temporum, choreographed by Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, at Brooklyn Academy of Music on October 15, 2016.

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