Monday, January 25, 2010

Grupo de Rua

Bruno Beltrão's dance company Grupo de Rua comes straight from the streets of Brazil with a uniquely high-energy blend of hip hop, capoeira and lyrical movement. The company is well known for pushing dancers to a point at which their bodies and their movements become unsettling. Dancers bend backwards, crane their necks, twitch hyperactively and slam their bodies to the floor and into each other. Hip hop dance moves, already explosive, verge on the downright violent.

Likewise, Beltrão pushes hard against conventional dance and music structures. Dancers pile on top of each other or run backwards in circles at extreme speeds. His extraordinarily acrobatic approach to B-boying is mind-boggling. The hour-long dance "H3," currently touring the U.S., dispenses with music altogether, the choreography performed to city sounds, electronic noises, sampled squeaking of the dancers' shoes and the sounds of a prepared piano. This is no ordinary street dance, this is raw and daring 21st-century expression.

Bruno Beltrão’s Grupo de Rua performs "H3" at On the Boards Jan. 28-31.

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