News > Review: Annex Dance Company’s The Path Taken

Kristin Alexander, Julie DeLizza, Maggie Bailey - credit William Long

Kristin Alexander, Julie DeLizza, Maggie Bailey – credit William Long

by Marjorie Rawle

 Heather Bybee. Credit William Long


Heather Bybee. Credit William Long

We don’t usually get much of a say in the way we experience a performance – we show up, we sit or stand, and we watch what has been prepared for us. With Annex Dance Company’s “The Path Taken,” however, the audience was free to choose any location, any angle, and ultimately any path from which to absorb the action.

Freed from the conventional audience-facing-stage arrangement, the entire piece took on an incredible dynamism that kept our eyes locked and heads whipping around the room in fascination. In the opening section, each of the five dancers occupied a separate position in the two-floor gallery, and they continued to rotate around the space, coming together and shifting apart in different combinations. The reverberating ambient music and the subtlety and control in their modern movements drew us in and kept us fixated on the ideas of personal journey and crossroads that artistic director and choreographer Kristin Alexander has adeptly woven throughout.

Cathy Cabaniss, Maggie Bailey - credit William Long

Cathy Cabaniss, Maggie Bailey – credit William Long

The intrigue didn’t stop during the transitional moments either, as we followed closely behind the dancers as they moved silently and slowly to their new positions for each section. A truly immersive experience, the performance made us hyper aware of not just the dancers’ bodies and expressions as a performance normally would, but also turned our attention to the space, to the other mobile audience members, and to the overarching connection that coursed through it all. You could hear the breathing of each of the dancers, feel the gust of air as they ran and spun by, and decide for yourself whether you were too close, too far, or situated just right amongst the performance.

As expected from the title of the work, there were many paths created and crossed over the course of the evening; what I was not expecting, however, was that I would be included in this path making and taking as an integral part of the performance’s overall impact. With no tricks or flashiness, using only skilled, modestly dressed dancers, a unique architectural space, and a willing audience, “The Path Taken” reminds us that our decisions and actions are never isolated, inevitably affecting and echoing throughout the many spaces of our lives.

Julie DeLizza at the City Gallery - credit Maggie Bailey

Julie DeLizza at the City Gallery – credit Maggie Bailey

Posted on March 28, 2016 by admin.

Categories: Performing Arts, Review

Tags: Annex Dance, Kristin Alexander, The Path Taken

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