La MaMa Blogs: Bobbi Jene Smith in T-Magazine!

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Bobbi Jene Smith in T-Magazine!

The performer Marta Miller rehearses “Lost Mountain” at her farmhouse, Certain Bird, in Stamford, Vt.CreditMatthew Placek

From Bobbi Jene Smith, a Dance Work Like a Mountain
Since leaving Tel Aviv, where she was a principal with Batsheva Dance Company, in 2014, the Iowa-born Bobbi Jene Smith has been busy choreographing or appearing in one work after another. “With Care,” an elegiac follow-up to her solo “A Study on Effort,” debuted in the fall, and “Deo,” a dramatic staging of the myth of Demeter and Persephone, which Smith cocreated with Maxine Doyle for the Martha Graham Dance Company, premiered last month. But even as she embodies Graham’s definition of the artist as someone who just keeps marching, Smith isn’t much interested in straight, continuous lines. “It’s creation and destruction. You build up and then have to come down, or go down to come up,” she says of her process. Indeed, the symbol of the mountain has become something of a touchstone for her, one that’s directly informed her newest piece, “Lost Mountain,” which will open in New York at La MaMa the weekend of May 16.
In this case, the mountain is not just a metaphor for the artistic struggle but also for the search for meaning in life. To Smith’s mind, one way that meaning can be found is through moments of human connection. “I like the idea of people bumping into each other and, much like the tectonic forces that make the mountain itself, rising up to make something larger,” she says. She will perform the piece with an ensemble of 10 that includes the dancer-choreographer Marta Miller (“I’m pulling her out of retirement for this”); Or Schraiber, Smith’s husband; the violinist Keir GoGwilt; and the Israeli singer-songwriter Asaf Avidan. When we speak, Smith is hesitant to give away too many details but shares that the evening-length work consists of a series of cinematic vignettes, that all of the music will be live and that there will be little separation between art forms. Fittingly, the group is rehearsing at a farmhouse-turned-artist-retreat on a mountain in southern Vermont. Have there been any inspirational hikes, one wonders? “Hopefully next week. It’s been pretty cold,” says Smith. “And we have a lot of work to do.” “Lost Mountain” will open as part of La MaMa’s Moves! Dance Festival on May 16, at the Ellen Stewart Theatre, 66 East Fourth Street, New York, — KATE GUADAGNINO

La MaMa presents

Bobbi Jene Smith | Lost Mountain

Part for the 2019 La MaMa Moves! Dance Festival

May 16 - May 19, 2019
Thursday - Saturday at 7PM; Sunday at 3PM

The Ellen Stewart Theatre at La MaMa
66 East 4th Street
(between Bowery and Second Avenue)
New York, NY 10003

Tickets: $25 Tickets; $20 Student/Senior Tickets [+$1 Facility Fee]

For Tickets and Info: CLICK HERE

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