Sunday, February 03, 2008

Mark Morris Dance Group

Sold-out Mark Morris Dance Group’s performance excites!

The Mark Morris Dance Group proved in their recent Play House Square performance why they are one of the world’s most prolific dance companies. Not only does Mark Morris have over 100 works in its repertory, and is the only modern dance company with its own permanent music group, but the company has a unique and identifiable style.

Morris, who is meticulous in his choreography, takes a piece of music and creates a movement for each note of the composition. These moves center on swinging arms, powerful jumps, flowing physicality, unexpected movements, interesting body angles and contorted fingers.

Morris centers on music interpretation, not storytelling. He shows no favor for harmonic style. This program included contemporary, modern, classical and atonal compositions. The live music, whether solos or combinations of cello, piano, violin and piano, was all well performed.

The company’s dancers, seasoned professionals, are excellent. No stars here. This is a company that dances as a unit with interchangeable parts.

Capsule judgement: Dance Cleveland and Cuyahoga County College should be congratulated for their selection of the Mark Morris Dance Group for inclusion in their modern dance program. The sold-out audience responded with a joyous outburst of appreciation at the conclusion of the program.