Dance Beat: Attack, Spilling Ink, Point Park

Michele de la Reza walks on water with the help of Attack company members. Copyright  © 2014 Attack Theatre. All rights reserved.

Michele de la Reza walks on water with the help of Attack company members. Copyright © 2014 Attack Theatre. All rights reserved.

Swimmingly. Attack Theatre zipped up to Mt. Washington for a Season 20 Kickoff and the wonderfully layered home of Anna Singer and Don Kortlandt. After negotiating 20-some steps to the main floor, guests could head up to the roof for a spectacular view of Pittsburgh (with the help of an in-house elevator if needed). Or they could head outside, replete with pool, and a site-specific number that started on the wide concrete lip surrounding it. Yes, the five dancers eventually plunged and dove into the water for more. Then founding co-directors Michele de la Reza and Peter Kope began a sculptural duet before Peter jumped in to join the fun (shirt, vest, pants and all). Michele began to pick her way across the surface of the water, buoyed by Attack hands (we always knew she could walk on water!). But we know the ending, as we know Peter — after all the pool was heated. Even board member Jamie Todd took to the waters, all in the name of raising money for her favorite company and Pittsburgh celebrated with a fireworks display (actually courtesy of the Pirates).

SPILLING INK

Spilling Ink. It was so appropriate, in a way, that Spilling Ink unfolded its Indian dance wares in The Carnegie’s Hall of Sculpture because the ancient dance form was originally connected to temple statues.  Vijay Palaparty (formerly of Carnegie Mellon University) was in fine form — forceful, yet flowing.  Using her highly expressive face, Nalini Prakash explored the binaries that exist in all human beings during a lovely demonstration of the half man, half woman form of Shiva. The duo then capitalized on those themes in a more developed work that was thoroughly satisfying. Finishing with two stories of Krishna, the two dancers demonstrated a wide-ranging skill in an all-too-rare performance of the Bharatanatyam style.

PPU Student-Choreography-Project-2014PPU On TV. Can’t get to the Point Park University Student Choreography Project this weekend? Well, the local university will go global by streaming both the 2 and 8 p.m. performances (two different programs) on Saturday. The Conservatory of Performing Arts is teaming up with C360 Technologies of Wexford, Pa., to offer a unique interactive viewing experience that will not only give viewers at home a 360-degree view, but also allow them to independently control the camera to their liking. In 2011, C360 was the first company to successfully transmit real-time interactive 360-degree video stream to fans during NASCAR Sprint Cup races.  We’ll see how the dance version turns out — click on www.pittsburghplayhouse.com.

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