The Oberlin Review
<< Front page Arts May 5, 2007

Senior Fuses Dance and Art

A collaged exhibit composed of live bodies, picture frames, newspaper clippings, postcards, displays on music stands and a projection of two girls manipulating objects while wearing rubber gloves greeted the audience as it entered Warner Main last Friday. Audience members wandered around the stage, admiring the installation.

Like a coffee table embedded in the ground, pictures and coffee mugs were arranged within a picture frame. One student was bold enough to rearrange the photos, admiring them individually. It was a fitting opening for Tatyana Tenenbaum’s multimedia senior dance show, Carcharodon.

The piece was inspired by childhood recollections of visiting the Pratt Museum in Amherst, Massachusetts. In the program notes, Tenenbaum wrote, “While investigating my memories, I began to recall a time in which I experienced the world more fully through my body.”

Tenenbaum’s choreography was composed of full-bodied movement, contrasted by more introspective moments. In the fourth section, titled “Vertebrate Structures,” the dancers started lip syncing to the music as if they were in a music video, culminating in Tenenbaum actually singing, belting her heart out in the middle of a spotlight. Immediately following, she sat in silence on her heels, plaintively smearing paint on her face and then wiping it clean again.

 At times elements were introduced abruptly, with no explanation for them being there.

A double-degree composition and dance major, Tenenbaum composed and mixed the music herself. The show had as much aural variety as it did visual variety; the dancing was accompanied by abstract electronic sounds, the sounds of water pouring from cup to cup, silence, recorded music and a live band revealed from behind the back curtain for the last section.

Tenenbaum used space dexterously in her choreography, giving a full picture of her style of dance.


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