THERE IS AN ELEPHANT IN THIS DANCE
"By turns comical, creepy, and uncanny...
The whole dance is like that: disquieting, the cliché pushed past the literal."
—The New Yorker
Playing off a comically overlarge plush elephant costume, worn in pieces or whole, this vividly imagined, adroitly executed quartet from choreographer Lionel Popkin looks at how an individual body can hold multiple histories and align itself with divergent cultural identities. By turns funny, uncanny and disquieting, There is An Elephant... abounds with choreographic eloquence, clever direction and thematic layering: It organically elicits a set of meanings both obvious and unspoken, from the pachyderm in religious iconography to expressions of interior personal space.
Choreography: Lionel Popkin
Original Live Score: Robert Een
Performers: Carolyn Hall, Ishmael Houston-Jones, Peggy Piacenza and Lionel Popkin
Video Design: Cari Ann Shim Sham*
Danspace Project, New York, NY
Dance Place, Washington, DC
REDCAT, Los Angeles, CA
Southern Theater, Minneapolis, MN
Philadelphia Dance Projects, Philadelphia, PA
Velocity Dance Center, Seattle, WA
Grand Performances, Los Angeles, CA
California State University San Marcos, CA
Guangzhou Modern Dance Festival, Gunagzhou, China
A project of 501 (see three) ARTS, supported in part by the Jerome Foundation through the 2008-09 Danspace Project Commissioning Initiative, the City of Los Angeles (COLA) Fellowship, with additional funds from the Council on Research, UCLA and the Djerassi Resident Artist Program.