TEEN AMBASSADOR: MALIA CAFASSO| FEBRUARY 27, 2016
The performance BodyTraffic takes you on a journey through three separate stories told through beautiful interpretive dance. The dancers were portrayed in simple costumes displaying sharp hand and arm movements to tell their stories. It was a truly unique thing to observe; it isn’t how anyone expected it to be.
As the lights of the theater dimmed, the rich sound of church bells began. A single dancer stood in the center of the darkened stage to set the mood. In the background, you could hear the soft crooning of birds and the rustling of wind. Moments later, she exited and out came dancers who began the first of many amazingly choreographed routines. In this first act, the dancers depicted certain messages such as the role of women or how the men are in control. The female dancers were shown flirting with men, being rejected, being tied up like cattle, and even nailed to a board to symbolize how they couldn’t do much in a man’s world. One scene caught my attention and put the act in perspective. It really focused on how the male character couldn’t see any importance in the woman, how he only saw her for one purpose, instead of the many other factors of her importance. Since understanding this dance style can be difficult, there was varied music such as Jewish hymns and jazz that often reflected the mood of the dance.
The second act, entitled Dust, was the hardest to understand, but also the most beautiful. It was a very dark and scary thing to watch. Several times it got so eerie I couldn’t look. The whole time there was little to no light, a deep rumbling voice-over, and the choreography was very precise and quick. The dancers frequently staggered around shaking their bodies in a disturbing manner that sent chills down my spine. When intermission came, I was in shock and in awe how I felt after watching that. The dancers managed to make me feel so small. They did a fantastic job of making the audience feel the pain of the story as well. The fact that dancing can make someone feel that way is what really amazed me.
After watching Dust, I did not know what I could expect next. I was quite pleased, however, when upbeat and happy jazz music started playing and out came dancers in brightly colored clothing. The dancing styles in this act reflected more of the old-fashion jazz style rather than modern interpretive dancing, but it was just as intriguing to watch! The dancers not only performed as soloists, but in groups and in partners. With big smiles and energy flowing, the dancers were at their best, showing how talented they really are. Several times the dancers broke into ballet, performing graceful jumps and leaps. Along with the rich sound of horns, there was a live pianist that blew through complex runs and that added a special touch to the music.
From beginning to end, I was on the edge of my seat, admiring the wonders of these dancers,how they move, and how they told the story. By watching this performance, I have a new outlook on what these people do. It might seem completely weird and unlike dancing at first, but I now know the extent of its power.