Wall Street Journal – Australia Festival at the Joyce Review: Down-Under Disappointments
By Robert Greskovic
13 May 2019
The dance presentations of the recent two-week, three-event Australia Festival were chamber-size thanks to the venue—the intimate, 472-seat Joyce Theater. Small scale need not mean insignificant, but there was little notable choreographic effectiveness. In the context of New York’s rich and varied dance landscape, most of what was performed proved to be, at best, of pleasant, passing interest.
“Attractor,” billed as “A unique music/dance experience,” with direction and choreography by Gideon Obarzanek and Lucy Guerin and produced by Dancenorth Australia, played out as a give-and-take exercise for eight casually dressed dancers, eventually joined by 20 prepped audience volunteers, to accompaniment from Senyawa, the Indonesian music duo of Rully Shabara and Wukir Suryadi. Despite its expressed aims of reaching trance-like and ritualistic states of being, “Attractor” amounted to improvisation-like moves that eventually blend, with the late-arriving audience participants, into tame follow-the-leader activity.
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