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Flash Review 3, 2-11: Juice and Jouissance
Hearts Leap Into Throats at Dancspace Project at St. Mark's

By Chris Dohse
Copyright 2000, 2014 Chris Dohse

NEW YORK -- "Tell Me the Truth About Love," seen Thursday at Danspace Project at St. Mark's Church, is a collaborative musical theater event, assembling a selection of W. H. Auden's verse, set to music, with peripheral dancing. Composer Paul Boesing complements Auden's words in a way that enriches the sometimes simple rhyme schemes of the chosen material. Many of his individual songs fit the poems so fully -- and Tom Bogdan's performance of the songs rings so true -- that the printed versions will hereafter lie flat on the page. Auden's love affair with his life-long companion Chester Kallman provides the adhesive for a series of episodes, a portrait of a sometimes stormy, always passionate, legendary, decades-spanning homosexual "marriage" that braced its ups and downs before Gay Liberation or Queer Nation. Some songs mince with a Cowardly camp, illustrating Auden as an effete aesthete, but when the mood turns melancholy, the space fills with the ghosts of all our failed loves.

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