Renana Raz and Barak Marshall

February 4, 2012

Dance Jerusalem went to Tel Aviv yesterday afternoon to see a dance program featuring two new works:  Renana Raz’s הדיפלומטים (The Diplomats) and Barak Marshall’s ווונדערלאנד (Wonderland). Here are YouTube clips of each of them, care of the Suzanne Dellal Center.



The lighting and costuming (slightly varied from the video trailer) gave The Diplomats a lighthearted and even pedestrian character. There were solo moments for each dancer, and complex density studies worth seeing more than just this once to be able to grasp. I was also surprised:  some of the scenes built in theatrical intensity so subtly that I almost couldn’t understand why I was feeling such big emotions from such a seemingly superficial work. Raz’s cleverness and the dancers’ playfulness in the piece had me chuckling throughout, and laughing out loud as it ended.



I am glad to have finally seen a work by Barak Marshall. I’ve long admired—from a cyber-distance—the gestural nature of his work. Each wave, salute, or swipe of the hand is delivered with such meaning, and at rapid fire speeds! The costuming and music in Wonderland are both reminiscent of Israeli (or Mediterranean? or generally European?—forgive my generalizations) folk traditions, yet the work still stands its ground within a contemporary dance context. My favorite thing about this piece:  it moves. It doesn’t only tear through space onstage; it sends movement through each dancer’s body in a way that you know none of them are holding back.


I’m inspired to get back into the studio. What a great kickoff to my winter break!

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