Category: Reviews: Performing Arts

Dance Review: CANDESCENCE by Gia T. Presents

By | Adrienne Totino, Prose, Reviews: Performing Arts

Gia Cacalano has come a long way since her traditional Martha Graham training in New York City. Although she respects choreographed modern dance immensely, performing another artist’s rehearsed movement never felt comfortable to her. After quitting dance for seven years, Cacalano finally found the style that suits her best—improvisation. Over the last decade, she has …

Dance Review: WAYWARDLAND by Jil Stifel and Ben Sota

By | Adrienne Totino, Prose, Reviews: Performing Arts

Each season, the New Hazlett Theater chooses a handful of local artists in multiple genres to perform as part of their CSA (Community Supported Art) series. Last Thursday, Jil Stifel and Ben Sota presented WaywardLand, an hour-long quartet also featuring Anna Thompson and Taylor Knight. The piece was a collaboration of styles; Stifel’s background is …

Dance Review: PASSENGER by Shana Simmons Dance

By | Adrienne Totino, Prose, Reviews: Performing Arts

In Pittsburgh, and other cities, site-specific dance has become commonplace. From small parks to large warehouses and everything in between, choreographers have taken their work outside the classical theater for many years. This past weekend, Shana Simmons and her dance collective brought their latest piece, Passenger, to the National Aviary on the North Side. The …

Dance Review: Loving Black by Anthony Williams

By | Adrienne Totino, Prose, Reviews: Performing Arts

“I’m a man. I’m black. I’m queer. I’m skinny. I’m awkward.” Anthony Williams, a dancer and teacher in Pittsburgh, began his choreographic process by reflecting on himself. He chose labels that described him, then researched some of those labels for a more universal look at what it means to be a black man in our …

Dance Review: Kimono
by Mark Conway Thompson

By | Adrienne Totino, Prose, Reviews: Performing Arts

The Kelly Strayhorn Theater hosted its first “Fresh Works” showing of the season on Friday night. The program gives Pittsburgh-based artists eighty hours of rehearsal space and technical support, to work on mixed-genre collaborations. Kimono was directed by Mark Conway Thompson, who worked internationally as a mime for multiple decades. He performed the trio with …

Dance Review: being Here…/this time
by Marjani Forté

By | Adrienne Totino, Prose, Reviews: Performing Arts

New York choreographer, Marjani Forté, brought the newest version of her three-year work to the Alloy Studios Friday night. Being Here…/this time investigated mental illness, addiction, and poverty in America. Forté was initially inspired by an experience she had on the subway train with a “symptomatic” woman in crisis. That led her to various conversations …

Dance Review: Texture Contemporary Ballet in Life, Love, & Jazz

By | Adrienne Totino, Prose, Reviews: Performing Arts

On Saturday night at the New Hazlett Theater, Texture Contemporary Ballet presented a two hour long show of five works in various styles, proving once again that the company is capable of much more than ballet technique. Associate Director of the company, Kelsey Bartman, opened the show with her group piece, Fun. The popular rock …

Dance Review: The Ubiquitous Mass of Us by Maree ReMalia/merrygogo

By | Adrienne Totino, Prose, Reviews: Performing Arts

One of the biggest challenges as a performing artist is to create work meaningful for the choreographer and cast, while simultaneously allowing the audience to be drawn in to that deeply personal world. This seems especially true for non-narrative work, which has no storyline. The story is ours to imagine. Choreographer, Maree ReMalia, struck that …