Performance by Madeline Best ’08, Brian Rogers ’95 Garners Praise in NYT

Oct 13, 2010
A real-time video performance by alumni Madeline Best '08 and Brian Rogers '95 was "radical in that word's primary sense," raved New York Times dance critic Alastair Macaulay, who added in his review, "its connection of image and movement places it in the forefront of today's many investigations of how video can connect with live performance."

"Selective Memory," which ran last month at The Chocolate Factory—an award-winning New York theater co-founded by Rogers and Sheila Lewandowski '97 (read more)—places Best behind a wide screen from the neck up, where a real-time close-up of her face is projected for the audience.

While employing various cinematic techniques, and an audio collage controlled off stage by Rogers, Best cycles through a series of choreographed gestures in tandem with composed shots "designed not to construct a narrative but rather to suggest an endless number of possible narratives, creating an enormous blank space in which the spectator will imagine characters, relationships, conflicts and emotions that are never literally present."

The result is "a close-up study in perception: of a woman and, in particular, her face," Macaulay writes. "It starts clinical, grows poetic and ends romantic."

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