Watching Physical Therapy on Tuesday night made me recall the pleasure of seeing short, single concept work. The space, the atmosphere, and the brevity of the work all combined in a way that allowed the audiences to uncover the simple pleasure of intimate performance. Not that the work didn’t offer way more than single concepts – Rita and Ken’s badgering about sensation while providing a hilarious lesson about choice, Thomas Poulson’s demonstration of the rhythmic possibilities of crutches while making us consider what is rejection and acceptance in our culture, Stephen Thompson’s blatant minimalism while making both overt and subtle references to figure skating, gay cowboy culture, bad taste, and just about everything else under the sun. However, it was inherently refreshing to get that sense that we were all there to enjoy AN idea, revel in it, and then grab a cold one. This worked better for certain pieces than others. Maya Lewandowsky’s duet as well as Sarisa de Toledo’s and Stephen Thompson’s solos all reminded us that making work FOR a space greatly changes the dynamics and possibilities in the work. These pieces gave no pretense that it was necessary to be anywhere other than a bar. But, overall, the diversity of pieces shown made me remember that short, almost flippant, works can sometimes capture an idea so quickly and succinctly that you are left breathless at the end of it. What a pleasure to leave chortling, but also panting!

Comment