June 6, 2021
Time slipped by this hot summer day and I missed the beginning of Cornfield Dance in the East Village. However, once I tuned into their Facebook page, the solidify crafted material sucked me in despite the lack of audio-yes, I forgot to unmute!
Regardless, the single, relatively immobile camera, captured the full shape of the dance's quirkiness and style under the blazing sun.
Many companies are dancing in the parks, on the streets and in plazas. Some manage better than others, but most frolic throughout mazes, bop between surprised audience members or express themselves in a free-form cascades of motion. But few engage the mind with the same logic, and open minded choreographic ingenuity as Ms. Cornfield.
Two lines of dancers stretch down the street. A leg goes up and back against a line-up of women pushing their heads around and beating their feet, like crickets against their legs. Cornfield's Cunningham roots are evident--particularly in her clarity, but she charts her own spatial compositions and technical bravura encased in a casual, pedestrian style.
Knees swivel side to side and wide, tilted arabesques convert to frozen poses punctuated by a lone dancer running down the street. Abstract in form, the two dances “Spaced Out,” and excerpts from “Small
Stages,” included original music, both live and recorded, by Andreas Brade.
David Pakrer's The Big Bang Group joined the outdoor romp with some of his own brand of kooky hip swings and loping runs not to mention dancers scooting on their rumps across the asphalt. And how exactly does that not burn?
A different feel, a different momentum framed each section that fluidly unfolded in layers of visual intrigue and humanity.
Lucky those who rested in the shade imbibing in the marvels of live dance.
EYE ON THE ARTS, NY -- Celia Ipiotis