Culture Monster

All the Arts, All the Time

« Previous Post | Culture Monster Home | Next Post »

A queen bee choreographer will take a bow in L.A.

September 23, 2009 |  6:00 am


It’s been 12 years since Los Angeles audiences had the chance to see the work of the celebrated American expat choreographer Meg Stuart (when Mikhail Baryshnikov’s White Oak Dance Project performed her dance “Remote” at the Wiltern Theatre). Now 44, Stuart has returned to L.A. and shows no signs of having lost her queen bee status within the world of avant-garde dance-theater. With her Brussels-based company Damaged Goods, she continues to attract international acclaim for provocative, visually arresting and emotionally charged dances that frequently arise from new artistic challenges and collaborations.

“I’m always trying to disrupt my process so that every piece I make is a different experience for me,” she says.

Stuart will make her Los Angeles performance debut tonight when she takes the stage at REDCAT with the Austrian choreographer Philipp Gehmacher. Their 2007 “Maybe Forever,” a kinetic ode to failed love, features live music by the Belgian singer-songwriter Niko Hafkenscheid and expresses the choreographers’ attempt to forge a shared movement language.

“It’s a reflection on love, loss and intimacy, and it’s the kind of work that you have to enter and take time with. But a lot of my work is like that,” says Stuart.

Stuart began her dance career in New York and got her big break in 1991, when an arts presenter invited her to show work in Belgium. “It was a complete fluke,” she says of joining the rarefied group of American choreographers, such as William Forsythe, who found European support for their work and became expats in the process. “I never planned to leave New York.”

To read more about Meg Stuart, click here for my Calendar story.

-- Susan Josephs

Photo: Meg Stuart. Credit: Eva Würdinger.