Dance Theatre runs the gamut in works by Eva Anderson


April 22, 1991|By J.L. Conklin

Eva Anderson's Baltimore Dance Theatre gave its all Saturday night at Howard Community College. Despite the small audience, the seven-member troupe, plus two former company members, deftly performed Ms. Anderson's five distinct and stylistically differing works.

From the stark modernism of "Chess Game," to the African-influenced movements in "Ceremony," the comedic pantomime of "Br'er Rabbit" and the ballet-inspired figures of the opening work, "Debutante Slouch," Ms. Anderson's versatile company was technically comfortable in a variety of styles.

Ms. Anderson's newest work, "Debutante Slouch," set to Bach's "Concerto No. 3 in G Major," is a fast-paced dance that contrasts a vamping posture against quicksilver movements.

Seven dancers were divided into duets, trios and quartets, and the interplay and juxtaposition of their actions were skillfully joined. Abrupt changes in direction, sparkling leaps and turns provided contrast to the dancers' recurring static poses, which melted like wax on a 100-degree day.

"Ceremony," an interpretation of a voodoo ceremony, had intriguing moments but was weakened by its stylistic wavering and an ending that was anticlimactic. The dance worked best when African movements were presented at face value; least when the movements became abstractions. Andrew Dove and Abdul Mustapha were particularly effective in "Agwe -- The Rolling One" and their vigorous movements brought appreciative applause.

Each work was prefaced by a brief explanation giving insight into the creative process and the person creating the dances.

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