Friday, February 24, 2012

"Finger Food"...King Bones

In this installment for S.C. we look at the "flexing" form, which is a derivative of the tutting genre. Existing at the intersection of "turfing" and contortion, King Bones creates a fluid and mesmerizing fusion of architectural lines and pictures:

MUSICALITY: Inherent to this style, is the idea of "pocket beats." If you listen to the accompanying track, you will hear a percussive snare hit on beats 3 and 7 of the 8 count bar. When the rhythmic structure is so clearly defined, it is typical for an experienced choreographer to find phrases that "sit deep in the pocket" of these hits.

DANCER SYNC: Certainly, this style of street dance requires extreme flexibility within the glenoid fossa and entire shoulder girdle complex. However, assuming that the dancer possesses the required range of motion, the movement itself flows beautifully. In fact, its interesting to watch how King Bones asks the body to create visual perimeters, and then subsequently trace within them. While some of the angular shapes, especially the 90 degree corners created by the forearm and hand at the wrist joint, are only accessible after conditioned stretching, once the carpal muscles are able to sustain the form, it can be a very strong aesthetic choice.

AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT: As humans, we are so accustomed to seeing the body in its symmetrical, anatomic position. Therefore, when King Bones uses the contortion to create liquid asymmetry, the result is shocking. Looking at 0:59 and again at 1:55, we see the entire dance taking place on one side of the body, its simultaneously eerie and breathtaking. Also, I found the intercuts between dance and pedestrian train rides, both surreal and necessary to maintain pacing throughout the piece. Inventive partnering, between the dancers, as well as the side of the subway car (0:38), also lend to the site specific exploration of King Bones' work.

KUDOS to King Bones for experimenting with various forms and location, to concoct a deliciously puzzling and intriguing piece of urban avante guard fusion!

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