News > REVIEW: Annex Dance’s “Imprint”

Annex Dance Company’s Imprint, Saturday, December 6, 2014, 7:30 pm.

Review by Eliza Ingle

Since its arrival to the Low country four years ago, Annex Dance Company has developed in talent and substance and proven itself to be a solid model amidst few modern dance companies in the region. Their performance at the intimate and equipped South of Broadway Theatre in North Charleston showcased the emerging talents of the company’s four dancers: Maggie Bailey, Heather Bybee, Julie DeLizza, and Cathy Maschek as well as the ever-expanding choreography of Artistic Director Kristin Alexander.

Opening with a new work called The Space Between performed by Bailey and Bybee, luxurious and sharp movement sequences were introduced by a dancer calling out “One” or “Two,” and eventually “Three,” which seemed to indicate when one is alone or with another; it was especially clear in the fluid and assured partnering work. Catching, falling yielding and moving apart showed the deconstruction of a relationship between two people in this poignant and poetic work.

Un/Stuck begins with DeLizza slowly and imperceptibly moving, her two hands eventually coming together in fists. Drawing the watcher in with her concentrated effort, she is frozen in time or action until joined by Bybee who physically moves her out of her state and into a more joyful lightness of being. Dressed in jeans and t-shirts, the dancers exchanges are playful and authentic supported by the folksy melodies of Katie Herzig and The Open Sea.

Inspired by the artwork of local artist Mary Walker, Ode explores her images of birds, figures and color with gesture and group formations of the four dancers in purple tops and black leggings. Intricate floor work and clean dynamic movement with birdlike quickness make this dance as visually vibrant as the paintings themselves. The mood it created through purposeful gestures and really showed these performers to be intelligent dancers attuned to each moment of the dance.

Under Construction, another new work for DeLizza and Alexander to the music of Claude Debussy seemed to explore movement and space in a conversational start-stop way emphasized by black outs and light cues. The mood or emotional content of this work was not as apparent as the others and perhaps needs more incubation time to find its real intention.

Conversely, a solo by Maschek was chock full of meaning in a portrait of a women’s inner landscape. Dressed in a simple patterned dress, Maschek’s distinct lines and sculptural shapes added to a dramatic nature that was a welcome element in the choreography. The dancer masterfully let the audience in to her very personal story told beautifully through movement.

The final new work called The Baby Love Suite was the highpoint of the show, as the five dancers moved into another great direction of comedy. At times resembling a SNL skit, the dancers were silly, schmaltzy and irreverent as they interacted with each other to the popular songs of the 1950’s including “Only You” and other familiar tunes. Alexander’s recent new role as mother seemed to unleash a joy and levity that is impossible to ignore in the presence of children. Kudos to this talented group, we look forward to what they will offer in the future.

Posted on December 8, 2014 by admin.

Categories: Performing Arts, Review

Tags: Annex Dance Company, Art In Charleston, Chsarts, Dance Review, Performance Review

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