Impish seems the appropriate term for BodyVox - imp as a noun conjures up cloning, grafting, mischievousness; as a verb it brings to mind falconry, developing the power of flight. Through 10 selections from their repertoire, this small troupe of dancers and choreographers trained in ballet, modern, folk and gymnastics showcased their distinctive voice that grows from pushing the limits of storytelling and physicality. They come up with outlandish scenarios that make perfect sense and execute moves faster than the eye can follow or an ordinary body seems capable of. And yes, they are proud of their genetic links to Pilobolus and Momix, both of which resonate throughout their pieces, punctuated and pierced with departures that extend and challenge their progenitors.
BodyVox pushes its own envelope with explorations of movement to classical music, as with Lane Hunter's hands and body language deploying Paganini's violin virtuosity and thus evoking the master's 19th century spellbinding performances in "Moto Perpetuo." Ashley Roland brings a flip side solo performance to a pulsating contemporary composition by Evan Solot in "Beat."
Fluidly dimensional costumes coupled with flowing choreography make "Reverie" a whimsical encounter of regeneration in nature, while "A Primer in Contemporary Choreography" pokes fun at the mind and matter of human mating and the telling of a generic yet site specific story through dance sequences. "Falling For Grace," in its knotting and knitting, feels like the art of David Musgrave coming to life with exploration of abstraction inherent in representation.
Butler University Jordan College of Fine Arts dance alum Eric Skinner showcases his original training as a gymnast, artfully working the trapeze with his partner Daniel Kirk for "X-Axis," a spatial visualization of geometry. "Dormez Vous" flips us into remembering recent Indy Fringe Festival theater and dance programs with nightmares emerging from the upright bed of two sleeping figures.
Going beyond the power of the human body to take us out of our spatial expectations, BodyVox juxtaposes film and video to bring diverse indoor/outdoor events and landscapes into dance. "Deere John" matches daredevil choreography reminiscent of silent films against the lyricism of Saint-Saëns. The Track Hoe operator has to be a split second perfectionist, even if the dancer is half crazy to partner with heavy machinery. The film Case Studies From the Groat Center For Sleep Disorders
is the stuff of Saturday Night Live
made even better. And the closing "Rip/Tide" reminds us of the Susurrus "Dunes Project" that premiered at Butler several years ago. With sleight of sight cinematography, the BodyVox company moves in and out of a projection to the electronic music of Aphex Twin.
Take away whatever message you'd like as long as you take time to cherish the fun these dancers have in sharing their remarkable individual abilities in collective collaborations.
For more on BodyVox: www.bodyvox.com.