Sunday, April 4, 2010

Mixing styles

Belle, during a solo in the show, gives the piece a certain gravitas
The final performance of Movin' at Sovanna Phum took place tonight and it was really great to see a packed house and six young members of the Cambodian dance scene giving their all in a 55 minute show, mixing classical, contemporary and just plain fun. I won't pretend to understand what every gesture meant, much as I don't with classical dance - I never used to watch dance before I came to Cambodia - but the six performers had the audience in tears and laughter and that's not easy to accomplish. The show began with some shadow-puppet inspired movements and then ranged between lots of classical hand gestures and moves to a free and easy style that can only be described as 'letting yourself go.' Belle was her usual accomplished self, carrying off each of her dances with the excellence of the seasoned professional that she is. This was well within her ability range and her involvement lent the production a great degree of gravitas. Besides Belle, the other highlight for me was the manic expressions and energetic execution by Yon Chantha, sister of the show's choreographer Yon Davy. She's certainly one to look out for in future shows.
Yon Chantha, all bulging eyes, big grin and energy levels that are impressive
The 6 performers take a bow at the end of Sunday's show
The beginning of the show in a shadow-puppet fashion

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