Kim Gibilisco

Photo: Tom Caravaglia

Kim Gibilisco Dances Relationships

Merce Cunningham Studio, New York City,
May 17, 18, 2008

A Review

The opening solo, Falling to Grace, with the sound, costume and choreography by Kim herself was a good introduction to the evening. Kim is a kinetic, fluid, and clear mover and a delight to watch. and she proved herself to be an interesting composer as well. The images seem to suggest bird flight, which was all right by me. However, I was a little confounded by the lighting (a problem that carried throughout the evening). This dance opens, fittingly, with Kim going though several across-the-stage slots of light, which were not quite cleanly focused and not quite distinct in color. These gave way to a full-stage, colorless wash, which added nothing to Kim’s statement as the opening slots had.

I was not prepared to face a full evening of this non-design in the lighting, but I got it. Time and again the stage opened with patches of light from one source or another and then dissolved into this neutral, non-color full-stage flooding. True, this monotony of area flooding was broken now and then with isolated pools, also a sort of non-color, but only when the dance yelled “Hey, we’re here!” The company of dancers cannot be faulted, nor the choreography.

Despite the Rain, the second dance on the program, introduced the company with their huge appetite for moving of which Kim takes full advantage. They kept me jumping in my seat, although I wandered once, feeling glad that no dancer had head lice (the theme of hat snatching was central to the dance).

Return, a duet, beautifully danced by Annamaria Mazzini and Michael Trusnovec concluded the first half of the program.

Kim started the second half with another solo, Deconstructing Joy. Her costume, by Cheryl Yancey, was certainly made for this dance. Flowing, lacey material in a gorgeous, unconventional brown, it added beautifully to the motion, the music, and the statement.

The final dance, Charged, really made the finishing statement of the theme of the evening—that of man’s inhumanity. Making motion based on images of torture was never (and is never) resolved. And although the theme was heavy, the dancers continued to hold me with their verve for moving.

Kim does great credit to those who nourished her art. And although I itched to get my hands on that lighting, I came away well satisfied that I had seen real dance.

Ruth Grauert, May 18, 2008