Trisha Brown Dance Company

Tricia Brown (1936-2017)  was a dancer, choreographer – one of the founders of the Judson Dance Theater – and graphic artist. Her visual sense translates to visuals like sculpture or kinetic sculpture.

Glacial Decoy – Choreography – Tricia Brown 1979
Restaging Lisa Kraus and Carolyn Lucas

Jennifer Payán, Cecily Campbell

Four panels of looped black and white images offer a background with obscure meaning: a dogs face, the side of a glass jar, a wood pier, an old door, a cow, palm tree tops, clouds, a tire swing… The piece is silent, but for the click of changing images. Five dancers in marvelous gauze-like, yet structured dresses (Robert Rauchenberg), execute long moves broken apart by limbs flung wide or bent and projected as if a child’s paper doll whose arms and legs are connected by brads.

Small hops and skips, slow turns, arms always extended simultaneous to legs…featured use of hands that hold, grasp and reach… pronounced shoulder movement…bending to and sweeping the floor, arms swinging front and back…running forward heads down. Rare proximity. Bouncing or kicking backwards. Segments in twos and threes. A matter of action/reaction.

In the Fall – US Premiere – Choreography – Noe Soulier
(Discordant) Sound by Florian Hecker

Patrick Needham, Cecily Campbell, Burr Johnson

Soulier has written that he explores “inorganic transitions, the gap between intention and gesture, effort and contradiction.” Choreography is, in fact, very like Brown’s. We hear – wind? An almost dark stage reveals two figures who stretch, contort, and hold difficult positions, then gently collapse. Sometimes a single arm or flexed foot is all that supports.

The piece exults in control and balance, core strength; testing limits of what a body can do. Floor work is graceful, fluent. Connection of the two figures is minimal and/or brief – foot against foot, momentarily entwined legs, a supported knee. A body is flipped. Red, yellow and blue clothed dancers emerge. One gesture bleeds into the next. Figures intermittently synchronize, but evince no relationship. We hear industrial sounds, rusty chimes; rumbling; static. Dancer Burr Jonson is splendid.

Working Title – Choreography Trisha Brown 1985
(Unmelodic) Music – Peter Zummo: Six Songs (Suite for Lateral Pass), Sci-Fi, Slow Heart, Song VI, Song V

Burr Johnson, Jennifer Payán, Patrick Needham, Christian Allen, Cecily Campbell

Dancers pull and push one another; jump and run, pumping arms. Leaning elicits support – a leg or arm temporarily buttressed. Limbs swing across torsos. Bent at 90 degrees, small leaps and hops offer angled visuals. Most often figures move on their own axes. Much is executed on balls of feet. Somersaults, rolls and crawls create arcs and coils. Bodies seem like rubber, fluctuating smoothly. Catherine Kirk, Cecily Campbell, and Patrick Needham are stand-outs.

Photos by Maria Baranova

Trisha Brown Dance Company
Associate Artistic Director – Carolyn Lucas
Executive Director Kristin Kapustik

The Joyce Theater 
175 8th Avenue
Through March 31, 2024

About Alix Cohen (1726 Articles)
Alix Cohen is the recipient of ten New York Press Club Awards for work published on this venue. Her writing history began with poetry, segued into lyrics and took a commercial detour while holding executive positions in product development, merchandising, and design. A cultural sponge, she now turns her diverse personal and professional background to authoring pieces about culture/the arts with particular interest in artists/performers and entrepreneurs. Theater, music, art/design are lifelong areas of study and passion. She is a voting member of Drama Desk and Drama League. Alix’s professional experience in women’s fashion fuels writing in that area. Besides Woman Around Town, the journalist writes for Cabaret Scenes, Broadway World, TheaterLife, and Theater Pizzazz. Additional pieces have been published by The New York Post, The National Observer’s Playground Magazine, Pasadena Magazine, Times Square Chronicles, and ifashionnetwork. She lives in Manhattan. Of course.