Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Keeping The Faith In Hollywood!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Catch Me Bird Presents Iron

I won free tickets from the Campus Circle website to Catch Me Bird's performance of Iron at the Ford Amphitheater on August 13, 2010. I was really eager to attend this performance as the ads for it looked fascinating.

Catch Me Bird is the dance ensemble brain-child of dancers, C. Derrick Jones and wife Nehara Kavel, and they do a dance style that is a combination of lyrical dance on stage as well as aerial dance and acrobatics done in large hoops or on rope harnesses as the dancers are suspended high in the air. The night's performance is titled Iron, and it follows the reflections of the couple as they prepare to receive their guest at home for their 6th wedding anniversary, also known as the iron anniversary (think one part musical one part couples counseling-lol).

The event started with music from a 3 piece band and guests eating picnic dinners on the theater's beautiful grounds. Then we saw a pre-show performance where dancers, Rachel Lincoln and Mark Stuver, danced on air and repelled down and up the outer wall of the theater while singer Sara Stranovsky played a small yuke and sang a love song. What was fun was that Sara was harnessed also and she would gently tapped her feet on the walls in beat to the music as she was hoisted in the air just slightly below the dancers. Two young female apprentice dancers also danced and repelled down the water fountain within the theater grounds.

We were then ushered inside for the performance which began with the dance couple dressed in black leotards wrapped with lights that made them look like constellations in a futuristic interpretive piece aptly named Constellations. Then we see the couple on stage in bed as they do live close-up confessionals to a video camera as the other spouse sleeps. Especially cute was when Jones expressed hope that he would get some “cuddles plus plus” that night. The rest of the dance numbers are interspersed between them getting ready for the anniversary dinner including the presentation of their bad gifts to each other. All the gifts were iron-themed and some way too funny in a "women are from Venus, men are from Mar" sort of way.

My favorite moments were when Jones dances with abandon while singer and composer, Ry Welch, raps a bluesy rap song called “3 Hours 'Til Wifey Gets Up”. This was a real catchy tune and I was a bit surprise that a white guy in a nice white suit could rap as well as he did(lol). Another is when the couple prepares dinner but uses the pots and pans as battle armor until they learn to let go and trust each other. The couple had many spirited discussions as they danced including about current events (Obama in the White House, oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, Prop 8 etc.) as they prepared the night's meal. Soon the guests, who are also dance couples, arrive. The first is Crystal and David Zibalese, married a week before Jones and Nehara and then arrives Mark and Rachel, the couple from the pre-show who are about to tie the knot. Both of these couples dance to their own love stories accompanied by the live band including 21 year old Joseph Quintilla on Sax. I sat next to Joe's proud mom and family so I have to give him a big shout out for his first gig since graduating from college with his music degree. Yeah, Joseph!

Soon the dancer couples sequester in male versus female battalions and do video confessionals while griping about their spouses. What was funny was that the women did so into kitchen pots and the men in to a bathroom toilet, respectively (I'm serious). During intermission, couples from the audience performed in a mock dance marathon with Ry Welch doing an 1950's American Bandstand type interview with select couples. I felt this part was a bit weak as the dancers were not professional dancers or actors. I felt this may have worked with amateurs if they were dressed in 50's garb (bobbi soxers, saddle shoes, A-line skirts), if nothing else.

The last performance of the night was after the couple discussed the pros and cons of having children then they climbed into large spinning metal hoops and they did a sensual dance, all in silhouette. Apparently the baby is a go as the next install-ment of Catch Me Bird is called "Conception".

After The Show:
I was lucky to have stood next to Jones' family during the pre-show (his mom was too thrilled) then I had a chance to meet Jones' sister after the show and to speak with her a bit. Later, I met Mark and Rachel who were very, very nice. I told them both how I wish that I could fly like they did. Mark explained the harness and pulley system to me and promised to give me my first "easy" lesson. Mark was also nice enough to introduce me to the gifted Mr. Jones himself. Jones was all smiles and energy and he took my compliments in stride. His wife Nehara was twirling around happily nearby, eyes sparkling as she chatted with a long line of friends and admirers. She wore a beautiful cranberry colored dress with a jeweled empire waist and looked quite the free spirit.

My Review: Loved it! Loved it!

This performance was awe-inspiring and freeing in a way that is hard to explain if one has not witnessed it. Some discussion of politics did sneak in but, as this is this couples story set to music and dance, it seemed perfectly understandable. With Jones' and Kavel's creativity and skill, it would be mind-blowing if Catch Me Bird ever does a gospel inspired performance with accompanied music and Bible scriptures. They never discussed religion per say, though Kavel is Jewish by heritage. From the show they seem more new-age in their style so I don't know how likely this is. I did read that Jones was part of the dance ensemble that performed "Creation" at the Crystal Cathedral years ago so there might be a slim chance for it.

IMHO Rating: See it! See it! A "must see" especially for couples!

No comments:

Post a Comment