SOLILOQUY - Blue13 Dance Company at Heritage Square

Reviewed by Amalisha HuEck

If you wish to experience the Victorian-Era in Los Angeles, there is no better place than to visit the family-friendly Heritage Square Museum, which explores the settlement and development of Southern California from the late 1800s to early 1900s, offering guests of all ages the ability to explore the everyday lives of Southern Californians during the Victorian era of Los Angeles.

At these eight historic architectural buildings, Blue13Dance Company found the perfect place to host a
Soliloquy , a dramatic series of unspoken dance reflections specifically targeting women, and their copying with the unique lifestyles during the Victorian Era, when electricity was something new and unusual. The innovative and unique performance, supported by the National Endowment for the Arts and ATK Audiotek, touched upon the isolation and loneliness of these women, where pain and frustration was deeply felt to the point of craziness. Going up stairs by holding on a rope, banging on tables, arranging utensils at dinner parties, changing seats and acting with fear, one can't help but to wonder if we were in an insane asylum?  

Founder/Artistic Director Achinta S. McDaniel with her team, Associate Director, Jon Paul, Producer, Savannah Harrow, Lighting Design, Benedict Conran, Sound Design by ATK Audiotek sensitively targeted the solitude, experienced during the pandemic, so that time in history and also in modern-day technology expressed today's way of living with the excessive use of cellphones, computers and TV's.

The dance numbers were exuberantly expressed by 20 actors/dancers, who went all the way bringing the audience in, interacting with it throughout the night, by sitting at a table or learning a specific dance number to choosing a final soloist. The enthusiastic cast members are: Achinta S. McDaniel, Alisa Carreras, Emmy Cheung, Ryley Clement, Presley Hawk, Maiko Okajima, Simone Peterson, Andrea Rodriguez, Ryann Simone Smith, Felisya Soqui-Garcia, Adrianna Vieux, Tokie Wang, Jayde Woodard, Jenna Wu-Cardona, Brian Wong, Kaya McAfee, Jon Paul, Ryan Amato, Jose Arrieta Cuesta and Braylon Browner.

From the moment we arrived, the friendliness of all the performers in making everyone a part of the narrative was successfully achieved. The pre-show reception with dancers was fun and well presented with the glass of Champagne at the entrance and delicious touch of food. Also, the little gift bags that are being given at the entrance are greatly appreciated.

Posted By DH Magazine on June 05, 2024 06:29 pm | Permalink