￼￼￼Leverkusen News – “Dance with Dynamics and Poetry”
Most likely, Jon Lehrer is not unknown in the dance scene: For years, the American himself was a dancer in various US companies. As staff choreographer for Giordano Jazz Dance in Chicago, he has been to Leverkusen several times before. In 2007, he founded his own company, gave it his unmistaken stamp, and now convinced the audience of Leverkusen in the hall of the Forum.
Lehrer’s choreographic signature distinguishes itself foremost by an impressive consequent as well as unique combination of dynamics and poetry; both expressed its power without any knick knack around it: The stage is empty. All that counts is the dancers’ movement. Pleading, they throw their arms up in the air, entice each other, fall into acrobatic frenzy as well as into melancholic character games, and merge into one in front of a blood-red background, which transforms the dance temporarily into a shadowy game of contours.
All this is inspired by arrangements of jazz and pop and a little bit of classics. In this, Paul Simon is like the English Progrock (progressive rock) visionary ‘Radiohead’ or Johann Pachelbel’s canon in d-major.
What excites is Lehrer’s art to neglect a frame and instead per se draw the movement forcefully into focus. This leads up to the acme of dance art, the solo ‘The Way Within”, in which Marideth Wanat goes to the limit: Close to abandonment and fully in action, absorbed, the dancer gasps and moans. In film this would be called reality-grown ‘Method Acting’.
The physical perseverance is visible and audible. The reward for this is captivating modern dance theater, which can’t be any further removed from suddenly trivial seeming classical ballet; a thought that actually is forbidden, which likewise also demonstrates what kind of visionary Lehrer is.
On top of it, he dares (to present) slapstick and humor, when the dancers stalk around like monkeys in ‘Loose Canon’, (when they) lose their order in favor of chaos, and also glance at the ceiling with a grin. Standards. Nothing else is being set here.
By Frank Weiffen – Leverkusen News – Leverkusen, Germany – November 20, 2013
Translated by Angelika Summerton