And yet, scores popped up in the residential neighborhood, dropped by Uber or carpool. Once inside purchasing cocktails, the attendees, mostly followers of Saint Heron, milled and chattered in a kind of communal haze. The feeling was wild and free … in utter disregard for the crazy hammering our culture has received, for two non-stop weeks, by a persistently paranoid new administration. For several hours Donald Trump was relegated to an irrelevancy, and America transmogrified into a shining, racially mixed throng of curious, vital and connecting young people.
No)One. Art House, among Los Angeles’s most fluid and audience-pleasing performers, then delivered a dance happening. The room, neither rectangular nor square-shaped, was bathed in blueish light. Stepping into a piercing spotlight, Charissa Kroeger, a beautiful dancer whose corkscrew curls topped up a white coverall, lunged deeply, meandering near to the floor. Three others joined—company founder Christopher Bordenave, lanky Micaela Taylor, and Sam McReynolds. This quartet navigated the room’s minimal footage, in clusters and duets. Encroached by spectators, and at times pushing against them, the foursome bravely rolled out separate snippets of choreography by Danielle Russo and Gustavo Ramirez Sansano.
An ‘off-to-the-racetrack’ soundscape had dancers on all fours, portraying horses in competition. A ramble around an upstairs enclosed loft space provided weaker moments; even with simultaneous video projection it didn’t work. A closing number to “Love Me Tender,” in its physicalization imbuing Elvis’s sappy anthem with real emotion, filled the space with near reverence. A repeating supplicating hand motion made it prayerful.
That the evening was closely choreographed seemed to go appreciated by the audience. Many busied themselves with cellphone capture; others watched, bemused, from perimeters. The crowd’s dynamic bulge and flow was driven by the patterning of scampering dancers.
When it was complete the deejay pumped up the house music. Having had a drink and socialized, having undergone a strange and fun adventure watching some very good dancers at close range, the audience themselves danced. And that pleasureful evening-capper seemed like a very good way to go.