Dzul Dance is an ensemble troupe that has amalgamated dance with aerial arts in their new show Danzon at Baruch Performing Arts Center. In Danzon we are submerged in Mayan rituals, offerings, the supernatural world, and a love triangle between a man and two women, while showcasing the music of different Latin American artists the likes of Control Machete and Chavela Vargas. Sounds like a lot of elements, yet Dzul Dance has incorporated all of them successfully for most of the program.
The evening starts with an excerpt of The Symbol Bearer, performed by Artistic Director, Javier Dzul. Incredible so the excerpt of what is to come this week was the highlight of the evening (The program from last weekend and this upcoming one are different). Mr. Dzul demonstrates why he is the leader of this pack, keeping us at the edge of our seats as he contortions and isolates each muscle of his back with fluent ease and snake-like dexterity. He leaves the stage after performing only one trick on the ebony silks, and opens the floor to the rest of the evening.
Other highlights of the evening were Jordan Baker who showed great dexterity on the silks in Creation, Cornelius Brown in his captivating solo Premonition, Robin Taylor Dzul and Cornelius Brown in Falling, and the contortionist capacity of Anna Venizelos in La Muerte.
The audience was in the moment with Chelsea Bacon in Still. Miss Bacon’s raw portrayal of a tortured and desolate woman while aerially suspended on a quadrant, unharnessed and exposed, she would sway, collapse and get back up again as she untangled the rope that would later serve for her dismay. This piece was where the storytelling was the most clear, raw and precise.
Overall the solos and paired performances were quite crisp, yet the company was at times convoluted and uninspiring even though their talent was apparent.
Dzul Dance serves up a different menu this Friday and Saturday, all the heavy hitters from last weekend are coming back. I suggest you check them out.
~~~Performances will take place at Baruch Performing Arts Center (at Baruch College), 55 Lexington Avenue (at 25th street, between Lexington & 3rd Ave) in Manhattan. Friday, February 12 at 8:00 PM, Saturday, February 13 at 8:00 PM and Sunday, February 14 at 3:00 PM. Tickets are $20 general admission, $15 student/seniors, and may be purchased online at www.theatermania.com or by calling (646) 312-4085. For more information see: www.dzuldance.com or www.baruch.cuny.edu/bpac