Tuesday, January 3, 2012

"So Hot"...Anne-Claire Parlebas

This video is from Anne-Claire Parlebas, who is a choreographer in Paris, France. Watch how a lighthearted sense of humor elevates and permeates all the movement. By being an approachable artist and not thinking too highly of herself, she creates an experience that gives the viewer the desire to get up and dance themselves. Her choreography is simultaneously complex and accessible. One aspect of choreography that is often overlooked, is the ability to have a sense of humor within your work. As in life, many choreographers take themselves WAY too seriously and usually…it shows. Pretentious choreo is one of the biggest mistakes a choreographer can make, and it is bad for two reasons. First, it does not allow for vulnerability in your dancers, or within the work itself. The audience may not be able to articulate it, but there is a lack of authenticity and a great deal of posturing. Secondly, it typically results in a audience experience that disconnects, rather than engages:

MUSICALITY: This piece oozes musicality all over the place! Watch at 0:19 how her movements mimic the sound of a percussive snare drum into the shiny reverb of a cymbal. Going back to the idea of humor within the choreo, look at 0:44 and notice how she incorporates a "wink wink double entendre" on the phrase "do things"…and then resolves the naughty joke by feigning embarrassment, looking surprised, and placing her hand over her mouth.

DANCER SYNC: For the dancer, there are little choreographic tricks that can help sink a phrase into the pocket so nicely that it feels like it flows without any effort. Anne-Claire uses a fun little traveling step at 0:36 that shows this technique in action. By keeping the foot movement the same, but shifting the dancers positions, she creates depth and shifting perspective for the audience, and a sense of cohesiveness between her dancers…they are dancing as a unit, as opposed to disjointed soloists. Also, at 0:55, she maintains the footwork again, but changes the upper body every two counts. When these moments are so much fun to dance…it impossible not to smile.

AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT: For the audience, the humor and joy that exudes from this piece is palpable and unmistakeable. Not only does the choreography draw you in using the techniques mentioned above, but her carefree attitude as a choreographer brings out the best in her dancers…resulting in a truly, genuinely, positive audience experience.

KUDOS to Anne-Claire for understanding the importance of living life to the fullest, not getting caught up in the drama and ego, and inviting us to come along for the ride…as she dances through life.

No comments:

Post a Comment