Batsheva Dance Company at Mandeville Auditorium Eric Nielsen 3.1.9
My lack of history with modern dance mattered not, watching the Batsheva dance company Thursday evening in the Mandeville Auditorium in La Jolla. The energy in the room was electric as the lights faded up on a packed room entranced by the group from Israel. The show began with Matrix type movements, so beautiful, slow, and deliberately layered into fascinating body sculptures of the purest intent. It was fantastic brilliance through the bodies of five men and five women. How can I fully explain the magical feeling that streamed through my soul? Perhaps that of an excellent concert, when your mind is completely lost and contemplating life, disappearance of ego.
The dancers complimented quick soft shifts of loud, abrupt, lyrics sung in multiple languages, ethnic flavors of Africa. Enchanting soundscapes of meditative beauty that blended the movement into a psychedelic blur of sound, light, and theater. It was as if a mirage appeared and for an hour you basked in the certainty of fulfillment. From the moment the illusion became apparent, the natural cycle of the movement began to wind down. Heaving chests and sweating bodies perfectly adorned in functional, realistic, futuristic attire. Mantras counting to ten led ten movements and ten dancers within beautiful balance.
The performance lasted one hour without intermission and I completely lost track of time, mesmerized. We were a European audience, silent, until the end for our standing ovation, lifting our hands and hearts to the ceiling. We walked the chill night back to our cars and our homes, with loved ones and felt full, early into the evening and off into the night.