See Bruno Beltrao at DTW NOW
If I could, I would go back to DTW for the next 3 nights with someone new to see Bruno Beltrao/Grupa de Rua’s “H3” each time. I want to watch this work work. And work it does, on so many levels. It’s a physically brutal investigation of time, space, and energy. It’s a collapse of discrete systems and a rebirth for hip hop and contemporary dance performance. It’s compelling, frustrating and rousing. Beltrao is doing something for hip hop that Forsythe did for ballet. He’s moving it to new ground and getting it in front of new audiences. He’s also providing contemporary performance with a fast and furious injection of what is probably the most common global movement practice of our times. He’s beyond appropriation, fusion, migration or transmission. He is full-on synthesis and he is banging apart the borders for the rest of us.
Beltrao has received substantial recognition in Brazil and Europe, but this is his first time to the US. You do not want to miss it, though I’ll admit that I might opt for late seating for my own return visit as the first 20 minutes gets a bit tedious. It begins compellingly enough but what starts as movement investigation begins to feel like filler (perhaps to achieve evening length status). I have much more to say, but as I spent at least an hour and half (most of it freezing on a street corner) debating the merits of the work and the merits of contemporary dance with my b-girl/American Studies scholar/Dance and Journalism degreed/recovering former member of the “poverty circuit” (as she tells me the B’way dancers call it) guest, I’m now tired and chilled.
But, I had to first say GO! What else do you have to do on a Sunday night?