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The Dance Insider Illustration, 2-26: A Pina Mandala
"Bamboo Blues" at BAM

By Robin Hoffman
Copyright 2009 Robin Hoffman


Pina Bausch's Bamboo Blues
Tanztheater Wuppertal in Pina Bausch's "Bamboo Blues," seen December 12 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Illustration by and copyright Robin Hoffman.

This evening-length work broadly references Pina Bausch's observations of India. These contrast with her observations of humanity in a personal and intimate way, providing expanding and contracting shifts of perspective. The language Bausch employs is consistent: long dresses and long hair treated as limbs in her much-imitated spiraling, gesturing movement; repetition; vignettes with props; and emotionally charged partnering. The effect on me was meditative -- appropriately, I thought, for a dance about India.

(Third in the Dance Insider's four-part series, Winter of Wuppertal, celebrating the oeuvre of Pina Bausch as covered by Dance Insider contributors all over the world. For more on Pina Bausch's "Bamboo Blues," see Laurie Uprichard's Dance Insider review of the work's Paris premiere.)

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