I saw Chloé Brulé and Marco Vargas perform yesterday outside in a Plaza in the center of Sevilla as part of Dance Month in Sevilla. Unlike their full-length show during the Bienal, which I wrote about in an entry in September, I was enraptured with their performance yesterday. The piece lasted about 30 minutes and varied from more contemporary dance infused flamenco to sections of traditional flamenco footwork. Overall I felt that they told the story of their relationship—no, there was no narrative, but there was a dynamic give and take that never became repetitive. They danced to a recorded drumbeat, in silence, and to the live voice of a flamenco singer.
|This is the Alameda de Hercules where the performance was. |
They were right in front of the two columns.
So why did this work for me and their full show didn’t? Well, first off I think the length and the location worked to their favor. There was no time for repetition that could become boring, and the fact that the audience was so close made us become a part of the show rather than outsiders looking in on a private world. In various moments, each dancer would turn towards the crowd so that instead of just a give and take between the two of them, there was also a relationship of give and take that formed between the audience and the performers. The energy of the crowd that encircled them and the cheers and jaleo obviously gave them instant inspiration.
Brulé and Vargas have done several outdoor performances around Spain in the last few years, and their work seems to come across very well in these situations. Their energy when they are outside of a theater space is powerful and enticing. I hope to see them perform again sometime outdoors.