Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Otis Redding, now THERE was a man - Company C Contemporary Ballet pays tribute

I splurged on some contemporary dance the other night. Mom and my cousin Mary Ann and I all headed down to the Lesher Center in Walnut Creek to see some Company C Contemporary Ballet. What in the world attracted me to contemporary ballet? This man: Otis Redding. Company C's winter program has an entire performance set to his music. When I read about it beforehand, I thought: Now THAT I want to see. And it was great--set in a kind of minimalist speakeasy with lots of emotional interaction between the company and the soloists.

They mix it up a lot, Company C, to an almost schizophrenic degree, but they're highly professional and artistic as hell. I don't know much about contemporary dance, other than the few classes I took in college, but the choreography was really intricate. And there's this very strange and somewhat hypnotic Nine Person Precision Ball Passing program that is just that: dancers set on risers, passing balls to each other like a finely tuned factory machine working in synch with almost childlike electronic music; transfixing. Their winter program continues in San Francisco in February. The 2010 Spring show starts in April and I will be at that show, which will feature choreography by Twyla Tharp.

Company C 2010 Winter Program from Rob Goldring on Vimeo.

Let's listen to the incredibly soulful Otis Redding. All these songs (and more) are featured in the world premier ballet, “Dreams to Remember,” choreographed by Amy Seiwert.

I miss your voice, Otis Redding.

Chronicle says of Company C: A+

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