This production of Virago-Man Dem was an intriguing display of various movements and vibrant colors, blending light and dance for a single product. -By Daniel Holley
Created by University of Illinois dance professor Cynthia Oliver, Virago-Man Dem is filled with simple movements and dance patterns. The four cast members dance fluidly around one another, and are often not in-sync. This style of dance is impressive to me because each member must keep track of their own specific movements and position on the stage floor. Although the choreography did not appear especially tricky, the cast was able to execute the simple movements in a way that kept the audience’s attention.
The performers of Virago-Man Dem did an amazing job at depicting the layers of masculinity, however, they were constrained by their medium of communication: video. Of course, when their performance was filmed, they were dancing for a live audience but for everyone else who wants to watch the show, the audience loses a lot of the experience just because they are viewing through a screen.
Virago-Man Dem, a production performed by the COCo. Dance Theatre, was performed live at The Dance Center in Columbia College at Chicago and made available through Vimeo.
Written by Willa Wu
The composer of this production, Jason Finelman, sought to explore the complexities of black masculinity through the expression of dance. Throughout this production, he adopted a relatively quiet and mysterious style to dancing.