By Rik Roe for Curtains Up
A last minute gift from a co-worker of my better-half, Fiona, resulted in a gift that kept on giving.
Taking place at our very own Place des Arts, we took a 90-minute long visual and auditory voyage with the talents of the Maria Pagés Compañía presentation, “Autorretrato”; a self-portait by Maria Pages, inspired by a suggestion from Mikhail Baryshnikov, to create her very own personal study.
Using dance, song, and guitar; reflecting a blend of Arab, Jewish, Persian and Indian influences, Flamenco was presented in a very true and pure art form. The combination of traditional poetry and lyrics along with inspired music and voice, consummate the passion of “Autorretato”, with the power of flamenco.
Passion is the simplest word to describe flamenco. Felt through ascension, crescendos, and lulls; all expressions in dance and music, as in life. Ninety minutes of being transfixed and enthralled.
Expressed through dance, masterfully and aesthetically presented, “Autorretrato” was rhythmically entrancing. Be it from the simplest of light and movement of a single dancer under a spotlight in silence, to the transition to troupe and full stage, there was naught but a mere moment to breathe and have a respite.
Flamboyant is one word used to describe the overall impression of the show, but I prefer to simply “not” categorize it under Flamenco. Everyone on stage, as in the crowded PDA, drank in the spirit of passion that was exuded from simplest of notes, to the most ardent of heel clicks.
From the swing of a shawl, to the chatter of castanets, to the on stage smiles between company members, all are major and minute parts of the whole that make it a much reveled show. Real and believable, and fantastical, all at the same time, blending in a 90 minute gift, that just has you awed and entranced, and wantonly wanting more.
The passion of the evening was received beyond a shadow of a doubt. The standing ovation was long, and the bows were many. Impressive, to say the very least.
A gift well received and much appreciated.
A passion rediscovered, the love of flamenco.