Arizona Daily Star;
Tucson, Ariz.; Oct 20, 2000; Jennifer Lee Carrell;
Orts takes to the air once again in a concert of adventurous creativity.
"Balanced Edge" explores all kinds of balancing acts and sheer
edges. It also explores an entirely new breed of aerial apparatus, extending
the simple low-flying trapeze to double-barred trapezes, skeletal boxes,
mobiles inspired by the work of Alexander Calder, and spinning discs.
Each of these newly invented, complex kinds of trapezes both test and
display the dancers' dynamic use of weight and momentum, as they partner each
other and the trapezes that give them the power to fly.
Aerial dance, as Orts performs it, creates living, dancing sculpture
suspended in midair. In creating these moving shapes, artistic director Anne
Bunker often raids her dreams and daydreams; executive director Chuck Koesters
engineers these visions into physical and safe reality.
"Balanced Edge" is a full-length work that hovers on the edges
between different art forms, combining aerial and modern dance, poetry, music,
videography and performance art.
According to a collective statement by the company, the piece is "a
collaborative work inspired from and created within the landscape of the
Southwestern United States. When we speak of balance, we speak of the dance
between human beings and the desert. We refer to the drama that is unfolding
at this very moment between human desire and the natural world. We speak of
the balance in the rocks and spires, fantastic shapes created randomly as the
result of eons of erosion and change. For the artists in this project,
'balance' is the word that binds us, and 'the edge' is where we meet to
For this work, videographer Koesters (who is the company's technical wizard
and in-house composer as well as executive director) has created a form he
calls "edge video," which will run as a backdrop to the dancing
mobile sculptures. It includes images ranging from purely abstract to the
blading of the Sonoran Desert to the rock spires of the Cochise Stronghold.
Koesters is also the lighting designer. "The lighting," he says,
"will be the most colorful and intense I've done."
Adds Bunker: "When it comes to lighting, we have an impressionistic
idea of what light can be. It doesn't matter if you see everything. As with
Monet or van Gogh, what matters is the impression of the whole."
Writer Charles Alexander, artist Cynthia Miller and actor Paul Fisher are
also contributing to the multimedia work.
Aerial dance is a startling, potentially revolutionary development in
dance; "Balanced Edge" will display Orts at the cutting edge of this
new art form.
* Contact Jennifer Lee Carrell at 573-4114 or at email@example.com
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