Cedar Lake dancers in Jo Stromgren’s Sunday, Again, photo by Carina Musk-Anderson
After thoroughly enjoying the opening night program last Monday, I headed back to Chelsea last night to see another performance of Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet‘s spring season, with different dancers in the leading roles of Nicolo Fonte’s Lasting Imprint and Angelin Preljocaj’s Annonciation. Since these two pieces, as well as Jo Stromgren’s Sunday, Again, were new to me, I was eager to attend a second performance. Additionally, it’s always interesting to see what a different cast brings to the featured roles. The more I see of Cedar Lake, the more aware I am that it is definitely not a “cookie-cutter” company filled with dancers that all move similarly and approach the works in the same way. Rather, Cedar Lake is a company of individuals who bring distinct personalities and movement qualities to the dances, and manage to look beautifully unified when dancing as an ensemble.
I already wrote at length about the program, but wanted to highlight a few of my observations after watching the second cast. In Lasting Imprint, Golan Yosef was vulnerable, delicate, and lyrical, while Acacia Schachte was commanding and almost menacing. Last week, it seemed that the reverse was true, with the lead man (Jason Kittelberger) appearing dominant and the woman (Jessica Coleman Scott) vulnerable and uncertain. The duet between Yosef and Schachte was particularly intense, especially when the white paint literally dripped down his chin and onto Schachte’s arm.
Kristen Weiser and Harumi Terayama had an entirely different interpretation of Annonciation from last week’s performance by Jessica Lee Keller and Acacia Schachte. Both performances were equally strong and compelling. Weiser was protective and maternal, and almost cautious, in her role as the Angel. Ms. Terayama did not seem terrified or anxious in her role as Mary the way that Keller was last week. Rather, she was calm and sure of herself, and she infused her role with a child’s innocence. The relationship between Weiser and Terayama almost seemed like that of a mother and daughter.
Jo Stromgren’s Sunday, Again was just as elating as last week. Although this is an ensemble piece for the entire company, each dancer was nicely featured and contributed something unique and memorable to the piece. I hope Sunday, Again stays in the company’s repertoire for a long time, as it has the potential to become one of their signature works.
The spring season continues through June 15th. For information about a special ticket discount for blog readers, click here.