Art of movement: Pilobolus dance ensemble brings 'Come to Your Senses' to Popejoy - Albuquerque Journal

Art of movement: Pilobolus dance ensemble brings ‘Come to Your Senses’ to Popejoy

The ensemble Pilobolus will bring its “Come to Your Senses!” tour to Popejoy Hall on Saturday, March 7. (Courtesy of Pilobolus)

Live theater is where Matt Kent feels most at home.

His career as a dancer was successful, and today he’s using his background as a tool in helping push Pilobolus forward as a co-artistic director.

The company began in 1971 at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. It has since created and toured more than 120 pieces of repertory in more than 65 countries.

Pilobolus is bringing its “Come to Your Senses!” tour to Popejoy Hall on Saturday, March 7.

Kent says the Pilobolus’ mission is to create, perform and preserve dances.

The company also expands and diversifies audiences through projects of all types and scales.

In “Come to Your Senses!,” Kent says, the pieces are a reflection to the connection to one another and the world around us.

The night opens with a piece called “Eye Opening.”

“It’s a zany piece that describes the evolution of the human eye,” Kent says. “We do this by inviting an audience member that we meet the night of the show. We get someone to play the teacher through this fast-paced explanation of the eyeball. There is a camera operated by one of the members, and the video is projected onto a screen.”

Kent says the show then enters the shadow world.

“We end up building a working model of the eye, and there is some crazy, eclectic music from The Shins,” he says.

The first repertory piece is called “No Men” and is dedicated to Jim Blake, a colleague of Kent’s.

“It’s a story of four men and their relationship,” he says. “It has an unusual lyrical element to it, but it’s ethereal.”

As the night progresses, Pilobolus presents “Warped and West.”

“It’s the first all-women trio that Pilobolus has made,” he says. “It’s the exploration of these women as individuals, yet also as a collective. Sometimes those relationships are harmonious. Each woman finds her identity through movement.”

The score for this piece was written by Thao Nguyen in 2018.

“The company was made up of more males,” he says. “This piece brought the women to the forefront. In this case, the artistic directors looked at the ratio of works by gender. We decided to flip that ratio and do pieces with women designers, women musicians and women dancers.”


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