The seventh annual soloNOVA Arts Festival, the longest-running solo festival in NYC, opened last night at PS 122 with the premiere of Binding, a solo dance piece conceived and performed by Jesse Zaritt. Binding is described as a “movement-based quest for love, connection, and the self in which the worlds of pop music, myth, and video collide.” But how does a dance piece fit into the soloNOVA Festival’s stated dedication to the art of storytelling?
“I think that Binding has a clear emotional and dramatic arc,” Zaritt says, “even if the internal narrative that I use as a performer is not the same story that an audience member might experience. While I hope that this work communicates effectively to a broad range of people, and I do often think about how this solo fits into the worlds of dance and theater, ultimately, my primary attention is to the internal logic of the piece.”
Of course, I found myself wondering, What is he thinking? What story is he telling? throughout Zaritt’s performance. But I should have been more concerned with what I was thinking and feeling during the dance instead, because Zaritt says that each time he performs Binding, even his own internal narrative changes.
“In my opinion, one of the strengths of dance is that each audience member is able to interpret the meaning of the choreography differently,” Zaritt says. “While this can be frustrating for some people, I find it exciting when an artist leaves me space as a viewer to create my own relationship to their work.” Read the rest of this entry »