4.5 : writing on dance : lucky trimmer #25

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Lucky Trimmer #25 / Uri Shafir: The Koloklum. 14.04.2017, Sophiensaele, Berlin.

Lucky Trimmer presents its 25th series at Sophiensaele with a smashing offer of seven solo and duo works, including Uri Shafir’s The Koloklum, which describes the „absurd state of existence“ in which the attempt to do all things results in the inability to execute anything. With physical elasticity at all scales, and, with movements intense, precise, and delicate like a charming hummingbird, Shafir contemplates our contemporary state of koloklum through an exploration of the shifts between pedestrian and abstracted movement, sometimes fragmenting, abridging, and jumping between movements, at other times unfolding actions until they flatten into bizarre planes of motion — long-strided walks, stiffened arms, diagonal falls — which Shafir employs so intriguingly. The music is heavy, entirely dramatic at times, and yet its seriousness lends a certain bass to the piece which could otherwise, say, affixed to anything electronic, seem light and ironic; rather Shafir stays true to his theme, and through sparing uses of light and, essentially, moments of pause, structures his fast-paced work, allowing us to absorb and stay present with this meditation on unpresentness. Undeveloped gestures toward explorations of architecture — passing through a door, some time on the stairs — could be understood as remaining part of the main theme of koloklum, but even without these moments Shafir’s piece for the stage alone seems complete: through unsettling vibrations of the physical and intellectual, without threat and without grotesqueness, eliciting humor, intimacy, bewilderment, and solicitude at once.

Review by Sasha Amaya for Viereinhalb Sätze.