A Midair Night's Dream
KC Fringe Festival
The Bolender Center of the Kansas City Ballet is an unsung gem in downtown KC. A historical building renovated into a rehearsal and performance space, it is a model of what may be done with a space. This year it is host to several dance performances in the Fringe festival, including Lucid, a collaboration between the Tr1b3 art collective and the aerobatic troupe Voler.
Set in the world of children's dreams, Lucid follows no formal store structure, but flows in a graceful, unhurried dream-logic that follows its own rules. The performance troupe melt slowly into view, drifting down from the audience into the dreamworld. What follows is difficult to describe, because each viewer is allowed to write their own impression upon it. This viewer must confess that she herself was reminded "A Midsummer Night's Dream": with a Puckish dancer bringing forward the nocturnal faeries and engaging them in the dance while above, a serene Titania descends from a paper moon, and observes all.
The program itself is divided into three acts: Hypnogogia (the state between wakefulness and sleep), N-REM and REM. These last denote escalating levels of sleep, as one descends further into the world of dreams. They become more vivid, more memorable, dream flowing into dream. Actions take place in the air and at ground level, parting and joining in a gentle rhythm. Overriding all is the theme of relationships, between ourselves and others, between seeking out company, and being alone.
The dancers are all sublimely talented, moving with skill and grace throughout the performance. There has been a definite trend in ance of late toward the aerobatic, and while such isn't generally yours truly's cup of tea, I must nevertheless own that it is done splendidly here,and to magnificent effect. Voler are a troupe worth watching, and Tr1b3 are excellent visual performance artists. The collaboration on display at the Bolender is a sight to behold, and one wich I may recommend without hesitation. See it last, before you go home for the night, and let its imagery send you into your own world of lucid dreams.