The Center for the Arts at Monmouth University has announced that tickets are now on sale for an April 6, 2019 appearance by the Bridgman/Packer Dance troupe, in a presentation of “Voyeur” (recipient of the 2017 Bessie Award) and other works from their repertoire.
Scheduled for 8 pm inside the Pollak Theatre, the one-night engagement showcases the recently expanded capabilities of Monmouth’s flagship performance space, with an exclusive New Jersey performance of a work that pairs expressive contemporary dance with video images suggested by the paintings of Edward Hopper.
The twentieth century American master best known for such scenes as “Early Sunday Morning” and the iconic “Nighthawks” inspired the unique visual dynamic of “Voyeur,” a performance piece that has been acclaimed as “witty, sexy and surreal” by the New Yorker. Utilizing the set components and projections that have become a signature hallmark of their celebrated collaboration, choreographers Art Bridgman and Myrna Packer bring the denizens of Hopper’s urban and rural milieus to animated life, in a “video partnering” fusion of human movement, sound, and the intimate quiet drama that was so skillfully captured by the painter’s journalistic eye.
In Hopper’s world, the silent people who haunt the apartment houses, movie shows and restaurants of those city streets share a kinship with the isolated buildings and filling stations that stand stark in the sun against empty highways, big skies and flat seas. Framed within windows and doorways like exhibits in a living museum, they are figures viewed at a distance, with the viewer left to conjure their inner lives, and the backstories that led them to this place of strong light and long shadows.
Together with the dancers of the New York City-based company that bears their names, Bridgman and Packer explore those stories in a way that “bears witness to fragmented moments of private lives.” The two Guggenheim fellow choreographers, who marked the fortieth anniversary of their professional partnership in 2018, have teamed with filmmaker Peter Bobrow to enhance the audience’s role through the addition of live cameras onstage. Conjuring “multiple perspectives as the performers merge and collide with the video imagery” — and placing the action within and against the windows, walls and doors of a shifting multi-paneled set — the artists have created an experience that adapts to performance spaces of all shapes and sizes, and that locates the “voyeur” within each of us.
Tickets for the April 6 appearance by Bridgman/Packer Dance are priced at $25 and $35, with reservations made through the Monmouth University Performing Arts Box Office at 732-263-6889, or online at www.monmouth.edu/MCA. Tickets for other upcoming Performing Arts events — including Stray Cat Lee Rocker (April 13), and Chazz Palminteri in his solo presentation of “A Bronx Tale” (May 4) — are also available now. To schedule interviews, please contact Kelly Barratt at 732-263-5114.