Sunday, January 14, 2007

Dance Crush: Zafira

I admit I have a few dance crushes, on troupes or particular dancers with whom I've fallen in love. My most recent crush is on Zafira Dance Company from Pittsburgh, PA. I met and took classes from Maria and Olivia at Triboriginal Dance Camp this past fall. They are fabulous teachers, giving tons of information and teaching with a great combination of strictness and humour. Plus the setting of the camp gave the opportunity to grill bug ask them questions after class/at meals/ while wandering around the grounds. I learned a lot and was completely inspired (note - I also took many other awesome workshops at camp, I recommend it highly!).

Last night I watched Zafira's video "Caravan Serai", a 50 minute performance which presents dancing through four vignettes: The Cafe, The Sacred, The Home, The Muse (I think I got those all right). Something I love about their style is the precision, especially the excellent timing when all four dancers are working together. I was less moved at some points (not into the Balinese-esque parts, natural tendency to get bored of sword work no matter how well done, but that's just me). The best thing about them? The energy they produce, and the fact that though they are dancing with choreographies you can tell that they are also dancing together. They look at each other, smile and interact and show you that they working together to produce this beautiful dancing. I loved it!

Zafira has produced a new video which should be available soon, and I cannot wait to get it. I plan on showing it to anyone who might be even slightly interested.


the ineffable b said...

I think I'm in love with them too...

What I like is that they mix a beautiful grace that is pulled from other forms like ballet and modern dance and bring it into their choreographies... so it's not your normal "stand vaguely in place... do some traveling hip bumpy steps, turn...etc." It's very organic and ethereal.

For even more fun, try YouTubeING Zafira Dance... there's an amazing video of Maria doing ab work!

Lisa said...

I just ordered the new video. The thing that gets me is they are so freakin nice on top of it all... makes Pennsic so fun

Toya said...

Well, I'm now in love with them because their video is named "Caravan Serai." Anything that close to my Mumma's name has to be good.