Top photo: George Hirsch, Carla Rey, and Jamie Chandler begin Act I of Awakening to Anger Exhausted. Bottom photo: Phil Lanzetta, right, at beginning of Act II.

Photos by Chip Tilden

Awakening to Anger Exhausted

Choreographed by Gerald Otte

Preview showing of a work in progress,
Thomas Hunter Hall 6th Floor Studio,
March 5, 2008

A Review

A small gathering of invited guests—Hunter College dancers and staff, supporters and friends—gathered in the late afternoon for a special preview of the first two acts of Awakening to Anger Exhausted. (Act III is still in progress.)

As the setting sun filtered through Hunter’s sixth floor studio windows, three dancers took the stage. Forming a circle, facing outward, Jamie Chandler, George Hirsh, and Carla Rey crouched low, hands joined, motionless. Even as the first notes of the overture to Wagner’s Parsifal were heard, their motion was almost imperceptible, slowly awakening, rising... slowly standing... leaning outward... then beginning to circle... building in speed... faster... until finally the dancers are flung into the space... turning and leaping. So begins Act I, as the motion, broadly lyrical, continues thereafter, building in energy and strength throughout.

Phil Lanzetta takes the stage, seated on the floor, for Act II. As he begins, his anger is almost palpable; it builds; it’s almost despair. The other three soon join him to the guitar sounds of Albeniz’s Asturias. Anger becoming almost fury, the dynamics continue to build and rise to a near frenzy. By the end of the act we are drained and at the same time energized.

But we are also left hanging, and we await Act III for this exquisite fury to be resolved. We are as delighted as we are exhausted, both by this small company’s superb dancing and the work.

—Emma DeMorra, March 4, 2008