Kristin Damrow, artistic director, Kristin Damrow & Company
I enjoyed hearing Xie Xin’s thoughts when working on just a male cast and the balance of energy. I too feel this way when working with my company, Kristin Damrow & Company. Each dancer brings into the studio an energy, whatever gender, to help bring a balance to the work. I also feel strongly about the history that each body carries [and] experiences that mold us into our emotional body as well as the physical. As a director/choreographer, the importance of honoring that history and having dialogue with each dancer to properly respect that personal journey and the way the work may tap into those deep past experiences is so important.
KT Nelson, Co-Artistic Director, ODC/Dance
Xie, as she said in her interview, was having difficulty translating her physicality to the men. How do we as dancers not trivialize what we think the choreographer wants? How does the choreographer help us find the nuance of their physicality? This is often an issue as you walk into a new company as a guest choreographer. I found the opening stunning particularly as the line with just the forearms and hands formed. I didn’t expect it. I could have stayed there longer. On and off but throughout I felt Xie leaving the choreographic situation she found herself in because they weren’t giving the simulation she needed to go further into them. But I wanted her to. That said Xie and the men fought for a subtle following and yielding, for sensitivity and listening rather than command and mastering. I found this emotionally refreshing.