Molissa Fenley Performs as Guest Artist of Hope Mohr
Mass Balance at Theater Artaud
Katie Gaydos, The Daily Californian
March 11, 2010
Hope Mohr, founder and choreographer of San Francisco's Hope Mohr Dance, pays tribute to her predecessors and mentors Molisa Fenley and Yvonne Rainer in her most recent show entitled "Three Generations".
The show's second piece, Molissa Fenley's solo "Mass Balance," utilizes slow paced movement to challenge our conception of dance in space and time. The most interesting aspect of "Mass Balance" is the 10-foot white wooden dowel-a prop commissioned by artist Todd Richmond-around which Fenely orients her movement. At first the intentionally chaotic and dissonant music coupled with Fenley's slow movements make the piece feel, at times, slightly inaccessible. But as the piece progresses, so does its power to move the audience. Fenley maintains a firm but relaxed grip on the pole as she gracefully raises it above her head, extends it towards the ground and angles it towards and away form her body. Although only making minute changes in the angling of her body in relation to the pole, she commands the space around her with a physical presence as large as her dowel.