V (PV) the ARROWS

Captivating and clever! This group piece is performed by dancers from the modern dance club at Okayama University in Japan. The music is by a well known Japanese band called, the ARROWS, and the dance was inspired by the tale, “A Frog in the Well”. Unfortunately, I am unable to find the name of the choreographer.

I was impressed by the strong visual impact of this piece which shows six dancers crouched inside boxes stacked on top of each other in an interesting way. Like frogs crouched inside wells turned on their sides.

The choreographer has created some really interesting and imaginative movement patterns and images that are visually catchy and bold. The dancers’ movements are small and compact given their tight spaces so the emphasis is on moving isolated body parts that twitch, push, turn, twist and even crawl in unison and in syncopated rhythms. At one point several dancers break out of their boxes and stand in a strong line behind the boxes with their backs to the audience as one lone dancer remaining in the box faces the audience. I thought this was a particularly strong moment and then they all somehow, not shown in the video, return to the boxes. The end is also powerful as one frog does escape leaving the others behind reaching and squirming in their places, either longing or afraid to follow.

On a deeper level this piece could be a metaphor illustrating how people in society live lives contained and defined by the “box” of social norms and conformity: all together while remaining alone. And to break out of this “box” to achieve the freedom of personal autonomy is both feared and desired.

This is a really fun and captivating piece, a great concept with strong and creative visual design. The overall effect reminds me of an advertising display of stacked TV’s that show synchronized images playing at the same time!

Please enjoy! And remember to pass it on!!!

 
 

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