Sunday, January 8, 2012

Enjoying Space with gloATL at ACAC

Lauri Stallings hates wasted space. Me too.

Lauri is "Dancemaker" for gloATL, the Atlanta dance troop that rarely dances on stage.

They dance spaces, they dance parks, MARTA Stations, they dance buildings. They dance in front, behind, and in the audience. Not everybody likes their dancing that way. But I do.

You never quite know what's going on.

You might turn to see jump-suited dancers, Virginia Coleman and Nicole Johnson, sashay by. Where are they going?

Inside the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center.

Here are a few pictures from Friday nights' performance of
"Physical Suite 2 on a Theme of Non-Fiction" by gloATL at the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center (ACAC).

I can't explain the title but let me summarize: Four dancers explore the big rooms at ACAC for about an hour. There was a Physical Suite 1 #1 on October 6 when it was warmer and sunnier.

It's between exhibitions at ACAC, the space is mostly empty right now. ACAC's next opening is Fri, Jan 13, 7-10pm: Day Job: Georgia, and 100,000 Cubicle Hours.

On with the show:

Before the show, dancers may appear anywhere. They stand silently.

The crowd mills around not knowing quite what to make of them.

There is a Buckingham Palace Guard effect. Should you ignore them; talk to them, make them laugh?

The action may start with a blur right beside you.

You may be in the right spot or not. If you stay in one place, the right spot will eventually come to you.

I pay attention to
Lauri, but even she can't take it all in. She appears at "the box" from time to time to change the music or change the silence. How much is planned, how much improvised?

One of the tunes was "Motoc" from Loscil's album Plume. Listening helps me recall the performance. But it wasn't all ambient, far from it.

Some dancers go up. You don't expect up. But Lauri hates to waste space.

Early on the crowd doesn't knows quite where to be. By the end, we still don't know.

After a while, you begin to enjoy the ride.

Standing still in the shadows is dancing.

There are solos, duets, trios...

and quartets.

ACAC has angles, niches, and shadows galore.

Sometimes you aren't in the right place.

ACAC's funky window is an outdoor stage for an indoor audience.

I followed outside.

The audience can go where they want. But the instinctual hierarchy between performer and audience keeps most of us still.



The crowd gets in the grove but still doesn't know where to look next. The comfort of loved ones nearby takes some of the edge off.

The freedom to move is a delight for children and for me.

The audience becomes part of the show but wary about joining in.

The children (beginning of this video) know what to do.

The crowd gets into the chase.

At times it's like the Ministry of Silly Walks.

At the end we meet the performers.


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