Review of 12 Minutes Max: 70 Seconds of 720+ Choices

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Natalie and Francesca by Chris Randle-1

What does it mean for an artist create with a time restriction? Is that a limit or a length to aspire to? 12 Minutes Max presented contemporary dance works of emerging Vancouver-based choreographers, each one 12 minutes or less.

Scotiabank Dance Centre’s 12 Minutes Max started in 1994 and was redesigned last year, focusing more on choreography and supportive feedback for the dance artists. During the season of 12 Minutes Max, three modules – of four choreographers each – were presented. A rotating panel of curators moderated a discussion after the show and supported the artists in their creational process. Friday night showcased a selection of what curators considered the best pieces.

Five pieces were scheduled for the sold out night, but unfortunately Naomi Brand’s Re:play could not be performed due to dancers’ injuries. However, we will have another chance to enjoy it at Dance on the Edge.

In the opening piece, Our Gesture Are No Longer Ours by Natalie Tin Yin Gan and Francesca Frewer, Frewer and Erika Mitsuhashi played with words and everyday gestures. At times, their matching skirts transformed their bodies into birds with wonderful moving legs.

Natalie and Francesca 3 by Chris Randle_fullwidth

Photo credit: Chris Randle

Veiled, an intense and fun work by MAYCE (Robert Azevedo, Antonio Somera, Marisa Gold), engaged the audience with conversations, vocal work and even kisses.

MAYCE 3 photo by Jonathan Kim

Photo credit: Jonathan Kim

Caitlin Griffin’s here and there, the third piece of the night, was a discordant voice in the night. Playing with chairs and lights, dancer Delphine Leroux performed a piece full of virtuosities.

Chor Caitlin Griffin dancer Delphine Leroux photo Yvonne Chew

Photo credit: Yvonne Chew

Vanilla To The Touch by Con8 Collective (Charlotte Newman and Georgina Alpen) combined movement and voice with hilarious and unusual props on stage.

Con8 Collective 2 by Andy White

Photo credit: Andy White

Although the time was limited, the choreographers deeply investigated and explored the principles of performances opening up questions and originating a debate. Moreover, I really appreciate the curators’ choice of young choreographers as part of the final show of this season of 12 Minutes Max.

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Carolina Bergonzoni Carolina Bergonzoni is an Italian dancer and philosopher. She is currently studying in the MA program in Comparative Media Arts at Simon Fraser University. Her research interests include dance and phenomenology, and research methodologies in dance practices. She is also a dance teacher and she conducts philosophers’ cafes. She collaborates as a writer with VancityBuzz and Vancouver Presents!
@caryoletta

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