Over the course of Rear View Mirror, a dance performance the
subtitle of which states that “objects may be closer than they
appear,” the onstage musicians gradually move closer to the
dancers, indicating a special level of rapport. When the musicians
join the dancers on stage, it creates a partnership where they
interact, play, and spur each other along. This Iridian Arts
presentation is a collaboration between the Robin Cox Ensemble and
Stephanie Nugent’s Nugent Dance.

In “Faster Than That” the musicians changed tempo, and the
dancers responded. In Nugent’s characteristic choreography, Marcos
Duran, Victor Fung, Blake Hennessy-York, Brittani Karhoff, Anisabel
Perez, and Cherise Richards deftly explored their surroundings,
flaring fingers and toes. The music was punctuated by moments of
silence that were filled with the dancers’ breath.

Some pieces featured just the musicians, in music that resembled
dance. Cellist Carter Dewberry and clarinetist Marty Walker played
together on “Points of Balance, movt. 1,” and Walker played between
Dewberry’s notes, dancing with a grin at the end. In “Square Feet,”
hand drummer Erik Leckrone improvised around the other musicians’
syncopated rhythms.

Dancers Blake Hennessy-York and Sarah Pon explored the edges of
each others’ bodies in “Bathers.” They draped and moved in images
that flowed like water pouring across each other, finally being
pushed by the ensemble’s drums into a dynamic ending pose, with
arms waving. Nugent’s choreography often features dynamic endings
that create open-ended transitions between one moment and the

Nugent danced “Circa One” alone. She performed this piece last
fall in her solo show, but here, sandwiched between group
performances, “Circa” took on new meaning. The invisible partner of
space could almost be seen as Nugent’s body wrapped itself around
the air in explosive leaps.

The evening ended fittingly with “Drive,” a humorous play
between dancers and audience, driven by the ensemble. Elizabeth
Schwyzer, Heather Carney, Janna Diamond, and Nicole Helton marked
through their paces, looked for center stage, and posed for the
audience. Because, after all, as Nugent said, what drives dancers
is performing. And perform they all did, with dynamic style and


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