Mixing dance, lights and piano, Remy Fernandez-O’Brien ’12 put the public in the center of an innovative and inspired performance in “Bursting at the Seams: A Seamless Dance Show.” The show – created and choreographed by Fernandez-O’Brien – was performed in the Production Workshop Upspace Wednesday and Thursday night.
The show started by placing all audience members at the center of the theater. Fernandez-O’Brien appeared in a giant robot costume, stepped down out of his disproportionately large metallic shoes, took off his space helmet and taught a short choreography to the audience.
While the public was left alone practicing the choreography to pop/funk music, some dancers took the audience members’ seats and observed their performance. The dancers performed a pop choreography on the chairs before mixing with the public and escorting them one by one back to their chairs.
“What I enjoyed the most was probably the audience interaction and the way Remy used sound, lighting and space. What he was able to create was about the joy of movement,” said Alison Murphy ’14.
“It was really reflective of the Brown spirit,” said Abby Moses ’14. “I liked the interaction. It was really outside of the box of usual theater productions.”
The second piece featured Nathan Weinberger ’13 and Nicole Parma ’14 performing a piano piece accompanied by choreographed elegant gestures.
“It was a giant lovefest,” said Nicolas Baird ’14, a dancer in the show. “Remy makes sure when he teaches his choreography that there is no right or wrong, that you are always right if you put everything into it.”
“It is a really incredible experience,” said Tori Wilson ’14, the main dancer in the third dance piece. “Remy works from a large piece to get us to an intimate place. He also makes sure that everybody is part of the process. And this is what he does during his performance, too, by involving the public as part of the process. His work is truly incredible.”
The process of creating this show started with auditions in February and ended Thursday night after three presentations packed the PW Upspace theater.
“It was a very personal show. He drew inspiration from his life,” said Adam Frees ’13.
Structured as a shared moment with a compelled, enthusiastic audience, Fernandez-O’Brien chased the cycle of passion, inspiration and personal expression through dance. The piece ended with the troupe sitting in a circle taking deep breaths, a moment of grace and reflection which invited the audience to share a meditative and peaceful moment.
“It was most of all an art piece,” said Laura Curlin ’13.
An earlier version of this article said there were four performances of “Bursting at the Seams: A Seamless Dance Show.” In fact, there were three performances. The Herald regrets the error.