Day 6: Yasmeen Godder

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Dance can be an incredible powerful form of art. Why so many choreographers have to rely on a noisy soundscape to really convey their emotions or intentions, eludes me. Underneath a thick layer of music, Yasmeen Godders Singular sensation turned out to be a fairly shallow piece of work.

Yasmeen Godder was born in Jerusalem in ’73, and moved to New York with her family at age eleven. She returned to Tel Aviv in ’99, and received a prestigious Bessie Award in New York in 2001. She has created six full evening-length works, of which Singular sensation is the most recent. It was commissioned last year by the French Montpellier Dance Festival. Her next choreography will première in Liège/Luik in 2010.

In Singular sensation Godder tries to explore this question: ‘who are we in the hyper-informed, self-conscious world of ‘look at me’ and how can we manage to find excitement, a true thrill or a deep connection to sensation?’ What we get is five dancers on a white floor (curving up at both sides like a skate-ramp), wildly gesticulating, on a fairly loud soundscape full of cracks, noises and electronic music (coming from the likes of Random Inc & Tim Hecker, Throbbing Gristle, Rona Geffen and Ziv Jacob).

I was,  honestly, not impressed by the choreography, a mash-up of different influences. And all the extra’s Godder included, couldn’t really excite me either. A man vomiting green paint, a girl dropping spaghetti from her dress, another one putting scissors in her breasts, made of oranges, or all together, dancing on a red jelly cake.

‘Her goal is clear: to move the audience, and place it in a state of emergency so that it participates in this cathartic act, even if she has to shake it up brutally’, is stated in the KunstenFestivalDesArts-brochure. Too bad, but it didn’t work for me.

(photo credit: Inbal Lieblich)

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One Response to “Day 6: Yasmeen Godder”

  1. Robert Persson Says:

    I’m with you on this one too. I was intrigued by the first facial gesture – the sticking out of the tongue. After that it was an unbearable torture of contemporary dance clichés and ham acting and I had to walk out.

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