|5. Photo: Fan Xi|
The choreography, by Tao Ye, is an intriguing mix of completely anti-ego and highly theatrical. In the premiere, 5, five (yep) dancers in pale loose pants and long-sleeved tops (by Tao Ye, Duan Ni, and Li Min) lie in a heap and slip, slide, and roll over one another in circles around the stage, like a nest of writhing snakes. They complete perhaps seven or eight hypnotic loops. The pace is steady and amazingly controlled; not once does an errant foot or head hit the floor askance. Legs and torsos rise like whales slowly surfacing from the deep.
|4. Photo: Fan Xi|
The group also performed 4 (choreographed by Tao Ye), seen previously at Lincoln Center. While predictably, in a second viewing it was diminished in novelty and surprise, it still made a powerful statement, especially paired with 5. (I wrote about previously it here.) From all they've done so far in New York, it's clear that every chance to see the company should be seized—it's a good bet that you'll see something completely new.