Author Archive: Mari S. Gold

Mari S. Gold

Mari S. Gold is a freelance writer who contributes to many magazines and websites. Her blog, But I Digress… , on cultural events, travel, food  and other topics is at www.marigoldonline.net. She lives in New York City.

Ariel Rivka Dance 9th Season Festival—A Mixed Bag of Modern Dance: Works by Ariel Grossman, Pascal Rioult, Heidi Latsky and Elisa King

Ariel Rivka Dance. Photo David Gonsier.

Strong women are the hallmark of this modern dance program featuring works by Ariel Grossman, Pascal Rioult, Heidi Latsky and Elisa King. Male dancers also take the stage, notably in Grossman’s Variations on a Box, the final piece, and one of the most powerfully engaging, as the dancers push and shove one another, abruptly fall to the ground, rise and move as a group with small, shuffling steps.

Utility: Mundane Made Meaningful — Closes at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater February 20, 2016

Vanessa Vache as Amber and Alex Grubbs as Jim. Photo Russ Rowland.

Hats off to playwright Emily Schwend who, aided by an excellent cast, manages to make an eighty-five minute script about nothing in particular hold our interest—almost all the time. In a small Texas town, Amber, (Vanessa Vache) struggles to keep her family fed and provide a few nice moments like a birthday party for her eight-year old daughter. Amber works two jobs that don’t make ends meet and has an on-going sparring war with her mother, Laura, hilariously played by Melissa Hurst.

The Nutcracker, from Company XIV: Red, Hot and (Pretty) Blue

Nutcracker Rouge

Take The Nutcracker standard and blend with a dash of Sally Bowles, a soupçon of Marie Antoinette, a pinch of dominatrix and a lot of spangles and you have the basis of the 2015 iteration of Company XIV’s Nutcracker Rouge. Everyone wears heels; in many instances, no one wears a lot else if you discount the G-strings, glittering codpieces and pasties. It’s a lot of fun watching the company prance through bits of this naughty-with-a-wink version of the classic Nutcracker with other fairy tales thrown in. There is some actual dancing including the opening, a vaguely Coppelia-ish number with one dancer in pointe shoes clad, as is her partner in Harlequin-like costumes.

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