“Reshimo,” the latest work by Israel’s Vertigo Dance Company, refers, according to the company’s English-language website, to “the imprint of a past impression left within. A kabbalistic idea pertaining to the impression of light – the fine outline which remains when the lights are gone and are no longer there.” Choreographer Noa Wertheim sets out to give form to the ineffable. “Reshimo” flows by like water, like light waves, which leave no trace and tell no story. Their presence is fleetingly evanescent, inhabiting the fine line between material and spiritual.
Low, rectangular white lamp shades, evoking a Japanese garden or shrine, mark the boundaries of the stage, creating an atmosphere that is clean, aesthetic, not to say ascetic. All eight dancers are on stage for the entire performance, sometimes sitting on the stools of light. There is quiet on the stage during the dance, with a flowing motion of weight shifted from side to side.
Gradually all the dancers come together to forge a connection of wholeness, holding hands in a moving chain held together by energy. One of them utters a syllable, which she repeats over and over as though wanting the sound to awaken the source of energy in the body, not relenting until the palms of her hands are suffused with vibrations and begin to shake.
The dancers’ motions consist of small body-touching movements, which have characterized Wertheim’s work since her first duet for Vertigo in 1992. These are accompanied by virtuoso, but nevertheless soft, movements. The extremities of the body – the palms of the hands and the feet – are limp, as though to refrain from blocking the inner tunnels of motion.
The dancers are excellent, moving through the space with light jumps as though trampoline-propelled, every motion honed and shining. Toward the end, autumn leaves cascade onto the stage, leaves that have ended their life and withered, dying amid beauty, and the dancers of “Reshimo” commune with them, leaping upward into life and falling-rolling into the leaves, as though desperate to disappear into them and become one with nature.
“Reshimo” is an aesthetic experience, projecting a gratifying continuity, without dramatic peaks. The real gems are the dancers.
Vertigo stages “Reshimo” on Monday at 20.30, Heichal Hatarbut, Hof Hacarmel (04) 664-0600.
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