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Fertile Ground 2014: 'Groovin' Greenhouse' a dance incubator and showcase
Bridge City Dance Project's "A Fight to Become." (Michelle Smith-Lewis)
Black socks and bare legs were on display at Saturday night's iteration of "Groovin' Greenhouse," an incubator for new dance, now in its fourth annual run at the Fertile Ground festival.
The dance showcase features new works in progress by the Polaris Dance Theatrecompany along with performances by different area groups each night.
Polaris artistic director Robert Guitron said during a recent rehearsal at the company's Southwest Taylor Street studio that for dancers and choreographers it's impossible to know which ideas are working and which aren't until you see them performed with costumes and light cues in front of a live audience. After each stage exit, dancers filed back into the audience to watch the next show.
On Saturday the Portland aerialist company A-WOL took the stage first, with two short pieces that rotated the dancers from a floor routine to a series of lifts in an acrobat's ring and back again, and ended with a pole soloist.
Bridge City Dance Project performed "A Fight to Become" next, accompanied by music as well as spoken word. The dancers' wore black socks with the rest of their legs exposed and their heads and faces covered in black lace for the first half of the piece, creating an eerie dissonance.
The Polaris company rounded out the night with three unfinished works with compositions and choreography from Guitron. In two of the pieces, one a video, dancers interacted with both music and spoken-word poems.
"Groovin' Greenhouse" runs for three more nights, Jan 30-Feb 1, with different area groups as well as Polaris in the showcase each night.
-- Celina Russell