Michele Curtis (Photo by zebravisual, pulled from The Sun Break’s review—thx!)
This long overdue review of Seattle Dance Project’s p3: Project Three, has one purpose and one purpose only: to encourage those of you out there who have not been to a performance of this Seattle-based dance company, to get out there and check them out—and soon.
Let me first be honest about my experience at last Friday’s performance of p3. I loved some pieces and was underwhelmed by others. What I love best about the performance was watching some of Seattle’s best dancers do what they do best: dance. The brain child of two former Pacific Northwest Ballet dancers, Julie Tobiason and Timothy Lynch, Seattle Dance Project brings together mature, seasoned dancers in a company that seeks to merge the best of both ballet and modern movement.
Overall the performances in Project Three were solid but there definitely a few stellar moments in the program. Dancers Timothy Lynch and Michele Curtis were by far the stand-out dynamic duo of the evening in a smart and sassy piece by Kent Stowell entitled b6. A little Broadway, a little ballet, this piece showcased Lynch’s long lean lines and Michele Curtis’s fierceness as a dancer.
This brilliant pairing returned again in James Canfield’s piece, Because, choreographed to the music of the Beatles. This was hands-down my favorite piece of the evening and offered a strong, tight performance by dancers Lynch, Curtis, and Kory Perigo. Once again, I was amazed by Lynch and Curtis’s breathtaking duet to “Yesterday.” Their ability to transition from classical to modern dance without losing their sharpness and elegance is refreshing to watch and a testament to their skill and talent as dancers.
Finally, we were treated to a new work by Edwaard Liang, who was named one of the “Top 25 to Watch” by Dance Magazine in 2006. Liang’s work, To Converse Too, choreographed to Bach’s cello suites, provided the perfect end to the evening. Liang’s sense of musicality shines through in his beautiful languid movements. The inclusion of Betsy Cooper, as part of the ensemble was an added bonus to the performance. Cooper is currently Associate Professor and Director of University of Washington’s Dance Program. Her maturity as a dancer is undeniable. She moves through the performance with overwhelming ease and grace, yet her strength is apparent. She is simply stunning to watch.
If you missed this performance by Seattle Dance Project, then go to www.seattledanceproject.org, get connected with them on Facebook, find out about their next performance and put it on your calendar. Seattle Dance Project needs your support and we need them to keep providing a venue for these stunning seasoned dancers to perform.
[Editor’s Note: I’m not sure yet when Seattle Dance Project’s next show will be, but I did hear some great news from ACT about SDP’s next season: They’ll be remounting their very successful Project Orpheus at ACT in September.]