Watching Eiko & Koma is like observing nature. The duo is brutal and beautiful; lingering, gradual, and dynamic; deliberate and chaotic. In a word, awesome. While the two are neither natives nor residents of the Bay Area, their impact on local dance should not be underestimated. By the time they arrived in 1976, they were already hajjis of nonverbal theater. They had studied with Kazuo Ohno, the avant-garde master of butoh, in Japan, and with Manja Chmiel, a leader in Neue Tanz, the German dance movement that evolved alongside Bauhaus. Deeply inspired by both art forms, they adhered to neither. Their original work, which made its American debut in S.F., was a revelation. Soon afterward, the dancers returned for a few months every year to collaborate with Bay Area artists. Fittingly, while touring with the “Retrospective Project,” a celebration of the duo’s 40-year partnership, Eiko & Koma have decided create new work here. Fragile, which was developed with the Kronos Quartet, explores fragility in a stark way. Audience members are invited to sit in intimate proximity to the performers and view them from multiple viewpoints, for any duration that is comfortable. During the second week of their residency, Eiko & Koma present Regeneration, a selection of three definitive early works.
March 15-17, 2012