Ray

Jerome Bel's Cedric Andrieux

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If you can get to Philly (or NYC later), I highly recommend seeing Jérôme Bel's Cédric Andrieux. Like Bel's Véronique Doisneau, it's a kind of documentary performance autobiography told in words and in movement by a solo performer, a former Cunningham dancer at the later part of his career. I know some BTers did not like Bel's Véronique Doisneau, and I'm eager to hear from others on this performance. I wonder: will it make a difference that this is told by a modern dancer, still quite young and active as a performer, from a "downtown" stage, rather than by a retiring corps de ballet member of the Paris Opera, from the grandiose setting of the Opera stage?

I imagine that b/c of the Cunningham connection, Macaulay at the NY Times will review it when it comes to the Joyce on the 18th. (Unlike in the clip that's linked there, the Philly version was performed entirely in English.)

As an ex-dancer I find this work so moving. I don't know of any other choreographer taking the time to chronicle dancers' lives in quite this way--through examining the sometimes mundane movement dancers have to do as part of their daily practice, as well as dancers' words. But again, I don't get the sense that it is universally liked--especially by ballet fans.

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I wishI could see CA. I for oneloved Veronique Doisneaux. I found it amazingly judicious, thoguhtful, a retrospective on a good middling career to which hte artist had devoted herself. As she said, she'd had a vertebra ermoved from her back; the question of being a principal dancer never came upnand she never pushed it. The piece is mostly hated I guess because ofthe section in which she demonstrates the performance she hated doing -- namely posing in the background of Swan Lake; but she also showed us a dance she adored performing, the "running girl" first shade in Bayadere, which she danced impeccably though without star quality. I found it very poignant, her devotion to the art, her honesty, the unsentimental assessment she made of all she had done. They also serve who only stand and wait.

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This website includes commentaries (with English translations) on nine works by Jerome Bel.

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