Vertical Influences - Patín del DiabloWednesday, April 19, 2017
|Le Patin Libre - Britannia Ice Rink - April 18 2017|
Watching the Vancouver East Cultural presentation of Le Patin Libre’s (Montreal) Vertical Influences, last night at the Britannia Ice Rink, made me think of dancer Shay Kuebler. I photographed him and watched him perform 10 years ago.
Kuebler somehow combined hip-hop with modern dance (and a touch of tap) to create what to me was something completely new. It is rare in this age to find something that is breathtakingly new that is not sidelined by something newer that takes its place.
Such was Le Patin Libre. Five performers (different shapes and ages) Alexandre Hamel, Pascale Jodoin (so sweet that when she fell my heart stopped) , Jasmin Boivin, Samory Ba and Taylor Dilley dazzled us with straight ice skating with no tu-tus, or schmaltzy music.
The performance reminded me that nobody can ever do the same thing for a long time. When I visited Toller Cranston in San Miguel Allende some years ago I was pleasantly shocked to find that his paintings had an air of the avante-garde.
|Toller Cranston - San Miguel Allende|
I see Vertical Influences as a work-in-progress in which I am sure the company of five will expand to more stuff that will keep being edgy, modern and, yes, challenging.
I must state here that I despise Olympic Figure Skating as much as I do the yearly Vancouver fireworks display. Both challenge my idea of what good music is. Can either of those “sport/art forms” survive without Carmina Burana? As a possible statement that Le Patin Libre has no Capades in its past or present they use standard hockey skates.
I believe that Vertical Influences might put what Patin Libre does as a possible new (truly) Olympic sport.
In last night’s performance I had a great time using a technique I learned while taking photographs of Vancouver’s Arts Umbrella Dance Company dancers. It is a simple technique where I set my camera to a ¼ second shutter.
In my Spanish mother tongue to skate is to patinar. Strangely one of those push scooters that children like are called patín del diablo. I can find no better definition of what we witnessed last night - the devil's skates.