Wednesday, June 16, 2010

'Narcissus' - A New Take





This morning I came across a shortish 1983 dance video directed by Norman McLaren (1914-1987) for the National Film Board of Canada.

It's a new take on the 'Narcissus' legend.


In the first section, a girl flirts with Narcissus ...




But he's apprehensive and finally rejects her - he's thinking of something else ...


Then, with more interest and enthusiasm, he's engaged by a boy ...












But finally rejects him too ...


... realising that the very best relationship of all - is with himself ...


... a conclusion he reaches ...




... gazing at his own reflection in a pool ...






True love!

It's parts of the second and third sections I'm posting ...

video

The choreography and the music work well together to tell these three tales of attraction. And in such gentle but sensual terms. A bare dark set pairs everything down to better focus on the characters and their stories. As does the strong side-lighting.

The piece reminds me a bit of the self-absorption expressed in 'L'apres-midi d'un faune', originally choreographed by Vaslav Nijinsky for Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, and with music by Claude Debussy.

Hope you enjoy!

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