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“Tabula Rasa” is a ballet performance that was out on by the dance ensemble here at Snow College. Tabula Rasa had a series of different dances with the titles of Skewed, Mother, More Than Words, Solitaria, Remember Home, “Some foreign word”, Interpersonal, and 16 months. I really enjoyed a lot of these dances, but some main things that stood out to me were the lighting changes, how each dance told a different story, and the accuracy/timing of dancing.
I feel that the lighting is really important when dancers are dancing. I believe this because it sets the mood and really gets the audience feeling what the dancers are trying to get you to feel. For example in the dance “More than Words” about the foreign exchange person, you notice how the lighting changed when the mood was light and happy, but then when she felt alone, the lighting would change to a darker tone. The music also tells a lot with the lighting. This happens because when the music changes, the lighting changes due to the mood that we are supposed to feel. When it is a happy mood, you notice colors such as yellow, bright blue, and just bright colors! With sad angry music you get more of a red, or black with just a spotlight, like in the first dance “Skewed” about the different worlds.
I enjoyed how each dance was different and told different stories. I liked it because it showed different types of dancing, and at some points I actually felt like I was feeling what the dancers wanted me to feel, because I understood the story and felt like I knew exactly what was going on. My favorite dance I enjoyed was the story called “16 months” because the “Purpose for this piece is to expand and recreate “16 months” a choreographic work influenced by the fall and recovery process experienced by individuals addicted to drugs (Ballet Program Handout)”. I really liked this piece because the mood was so intense and really grabbed me. Grabbing me meaning I was sucked into this dance the whole time. Drug addiction is a important thing and some people don’t take it seriously, or even realize what other people have to go through to recover. Most of the lighting was red because it is a cruel time for the people recovering. The ending of that performance was powerful because the girl goes on top of the girl on the floor ready to attack her with drugs (I think) and the girl on the floor just grabs that girls wrist to stop it. That was so powerful to me and I could’ve watched more if there was more to that story!
Last thing I really noticed about this ballet was the timing and synchronization of the dancers. For the most part everyone was in sync. But there were a lot of times where the girls were all off, or off by a couple counts and it was noticeable. I also noticed how some girls would try to do a move, but you could tell wasn’t flexible enough to make it look pretty. I am no professional critique, but these were just very visible to me.
In the end, I enjoyed this performance very much. All the stories were great along with the lighting usage, all the unique stories behind each dance, and the accuracy and synchronization of the dancers. I would for sure come to another ballet performance. I now can’t sit through a ballet the same without looking for all these little things!
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