Must-see performance art.
Organized with Alexsa Durrans and Miles Brenninkmeijer, this run in May was their first live in-person event in 3 years. While each and every performer pushed boundaries and took the 3 minute (full and complete) performance rule to heart, all of the pieces had four versions based on where you sat in the open black box space. A select few performances were almost entirely missed by 1/4 of the audience based on view. But overall, they were choreographed for the space.
The stand out performances I must address are Ana Maria Alvarez, Jackie Lopez, Yunuen Rhi, Cristin Tatomer, and Jobel Medina. While I didn’t interview any of these artists about their performance or get the official story. I don’t think this kind of performance art has to be translated literally to get the story. Whatever story I absorbed in the piece is how the work lives. Performance art, dance in this type, can be made into a hundred different perspectives as the hundred person audience – there is no right way to absorb these stories.
Ana Maria Alvarez had the pressure to start the night with her 3 section piece, relying heavily on the impact of giving deeper meaning to repeated choreography – giving us a chance to absorb with a new intention. I was mesmerized by her charm and dynamic levels in lighting and storytelling. Jackie Lopez brought me to tears, she opened her origin story to us and let the power of her words move us from understanding to feeling the deep resonant movements within ourselves. She embraced the genetic imprint of boundless persistence and honored the endless trials of her Mother giving every ounce of her strength to Jackie. Yunuen Rhi took us on a hypnotic journey through life, a big picture piece about grace, strength, endurance, and quaking destruction. Rhi moved so perfectly, their ritual transporting us to another time and place beyond our grasp.
Cristin Tatomer performed a more narrative style character in the 1920’s on her last leg – closing in on a mental breakdown. It was purposefully stressful, lopsided, textured, and paced. Her piece relied on the setting just as much as the action, giving volumes of story in this peek into the asylum of her mind. Jobel Medina captured the energy of the room, their movement and body shape and motion felt like the music moved the piece, the scene was explosive. The audience forgot themselves and joined in but couldn’t take their eyes off of Medina. Although their piece was the closing number, I wanted much much more.
Followed by a generous reception and sprawling lounge space in a gorgeous venue, this bi-annual show is not to be missed.
“HI, SOLO is a bi-annual performance series conceived by Alexx Shilling and Devika Wickremesinghe in 2015. Using a structure inspired by dancer and choreographer Mark Haim, HI, SOLO presents an evening of dance, which centers artists making performance work in Los Angeles. Artists are challenged to adapt varying choreographic and improvisational strategies to respond to the call: perform a new solo work in three-minutes time. HI, SOLO #11 recommences this Pieter Performance Space tradition and longstanding offering to Los Angeles’ dance community by presenting new performances by Ana María Alvarez, Creighton Baxter, Shauna Davis, DeFacto X, Edgar Fabián Frías, Jackie “Miss Funk” Lopez, Jobel Medina, Yunuen Rhi, Michelle Sui, and Estrellx Supernova.
Wonmi’s WAREHOUSE Programs is organized by Alex Sloane, Associate Curator of Performance and Programs, with Brian Dang, Programming Coordinator.
Wonmi’s WAREHOUSE Programs is founded by Wonmi & Kihong Kwon and Family.”
Learn more at MOCA.org
Alexsa Durrans is a Canadian choreographer and dance artist currently based in Los Angeles. She works collaboratively and across genres to amplify embodiment and collective experience. These movement assemblages are modes to deviate to new possibilities of interaction.
Miles Brenninkmeijer is a dancer based in Los Angeles. Through improvisational scores, they use movement to engage material subjects in collaborative choreographies.