Momix, Tanowitz, Ailey, and In-Person Masterclasses
After the hassle of finding parking and traipsing through snow piles, I was nestled in at the Mimi Ohio Theater of Playhouse Square and quickly whisked away into a world of pure spectacle. I had found my seat just in time to see a giant metal circular dream catcher rolling across the stage, dancers weaving in between the rungs in a circus-like fashion. This performing company, Momix, presented their work “Viva Momix” as part of DANCECleveland’s performance series, which proved to be quite an entertaining evening.
With everything from stilts to balloons, this show incorporated a variety of props to add to the visual effect of the movement. In a piece titled “Marigolds,” dancers wore costumes very indicative of the name. First appearing as only little tuffs of fabric- reminiscent of the flower, starting low to the ground, the dancers slowly grew and so did their costumes. By the end of the piece, the dancers were moving through space with full-length spinning skirts.
In the piece “Paper Trails.” dancers rolled and unrolled themselves in giant sheets of paper, eventually coming together to create a massive paper sculpture that traveled offstage at the end of the piece. “Light Reigns” used glowing sticks of light to create moving shapes in the theatre’s darkness and in “Echoes of Narcissus” the dancer danced with their own reflection on a giant slanted mirror.
This all led up to the comedic final number, “If You Need Some Body,” where dancers and rag dolls moved across the stage simultaneously to this upbeat song. As an audience member, I can definitely say that this show was something different from your typical concert dance performance.
Being a current dance major, I think that getting to see professional work is of immense value to the student’s perspective. And by being a dance major here at Cleveland State University, I get that experience brought right to me, being in the heart of Playhouse Square.
DANCECleveland will continue to bring world-renowned concert dance to the Cleveland community through their programming this Spring. Coming up on March 19 is Pam Tanowitz Dance, who will collaborate with Simone Dinnerstein to present “New Work for Goldberg Variations.” A unique feature about this group of artists is that they will be offering the first in-person DANCECleveland masterclass since the start of Covid.
Myself, being a dance major, always looked forward to these events, and they have been sorely missed the past few years. It is an opportunity to study with well-recognized artists from all over and a chance to soak up some of their expertise- hopefully, in turn, adding to my experiences as a growing dancer.
This masterclass will be held on March 19 at the Idea Center’s Gund Studio on Euclid Avenue in Playhouse Square. The class is open to advanced dancers, but registration is required. Find the event information here.
Pam Tanowitz Dance will be followed by Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in April. This famed dance company will not just be in Cleveland for one night, but an entire weekend of shows. With three different show dates, April 22 through 24, audiences will see the company’s iconic work, including “Revelations.” This is an event I strongly look forward to, as I imagine any modern dance fanatic in Cleveland does as well.
For more information about DANCECleveland and their season, please visit their webpage.