Monday, 1 July 2013

MAKING WAVES: For 30th anniversary season, L'Acadco delivers a dazzling, high-energy showcase

ON POINT: A pas de deux scene from "Divine Unity". Below, the troupe in "Abuzuiké".

From the versatile choreography to the vibrant costuming to the visually sumptuous imagery, L'Acadco's 30th anniversary season of dance provides a compelling example of what can happen when dance theatre transcends performance and makes the leap (literally) to out-of-body experience, without compromising that unerring essence of Afro-Caribbean culture. 

As this milestone season confirms, the acclaimed troupe is enjoying a period of broadening vocabulary (the L'Antech technique, in particular, continues to evolve beautifully) and heightened technical rigour. 

For proof look no further than the robust repertoire, populated by new and revived works and featuring memorable contributions from storyteller par excellence Amina Blackwood-Meeks, who delivers the show's fascinating narrative arc, and Mutabaruka, whose powerful solo rendition of "The Lament of I The Slave" transports the audience to his iconic dub-poetry roots. 
As for the dance pieces, they are mired largely in soul-shaking power, searing pain and raw passion, not to mention an occasional sense of playfulness. Any mention of the highlights (the gala-night edition) must include Artistic Director L'Antoinette Stines' triumphant "Negg Mawon" (complete with a striking red backdrop and expressive white-clad male dancers cast as 'running slaves'); the elegantly executed "Inconclusive"; Amanyea Stines' subtly erotic, Latin-flavoured "Our Tango"; and the Black consciousness celebration "Chat Bout," driven by Stephen Marley's wised-up opus "Mind Control." 

In short, the show (dubbed "Waves of Pearls") is a dazzling showcase for these energetic, committed dancers (and masterful drumming corps) and their fearless and enduring director -- and a worthwhile tribute to the entire L'Acadco family, whose commitment to creative excellence will most certainly lead them to another fun, fantastic 30 and beyond.

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