Star Trek: Ultimate Voyage – Best night of my life. This is an orchestra playing star trek music while they play star trek montages. I love star trek music. Love it. If I’m being intellectual, it was far from perfect. The orchestra wasn’t the best. Some of the montages were kinda dopey. The chronology of the montages was weird and didn’t work. But, I was so happy. Like, grinning like an idiot, clapping like a seal, cloud 9, so happy, happy. They went to intermission with the cliffhanger from Best of Both Worlds. HOW GENIUS IS THAT?! It was so good. We had to buy tickets twice, because work was maybe going to overlap with the Tucson concert, so I bought phoenix tickets just in case. That’s the way it happened, so we gave away the Tucson tickets. So worth it.
Premium Blend – This was pretty good this year. They’ve been on a down swing lately, the last couple years have been all modern and ballet. Which are nice, but the whole point of this show (for me) is the variety, and two styles is not variety. This year they had one jazz-ish song. Not really jazz, just jazz in the way that it captures dance that’s not modern but isn’t specifically any other style. They also did ballet and modern, and they were fine, but the Cajun inspired one was pretty cool. Their big piece was a Jose Limon dance, something native american inspired. It was dedicated to specific tribes and it had specific dances throughout that may have been reflections of those tribes if you know about those things. I didn’t and just thought it was kinda weird. Good show overall though.
Shen Wei Dance Arts – Super not for me. This is … I don’t know, post-modern? The first piece was Rite of Spring, which is a Stravinsky ballet that supposedly caused great distress in the audience when it premiered because it’s super weird. Both the music and the dancing were terrible. Sporadic, staccato, random, flailing, junk. All done extremely well but extremely talented dancers, but no. It was the dance equivalent of dissonance. A thing that some people think is a cool reaction to accepted rules, but I think is terrible. The second piece wasn’t as bad, but wasn’t great. It was very slow with people more posing than dancing. The dancers are god damn incredible, some of the things they did, at the insanely slow and controlled speeds that they did them, were amazing. Strength that I can’t even imagine. I liked parts of it, but I kept wishing they were going to start dancing at some point. It was well done, it just wasn’t fun for me.
Bodytraffic – This is another dance group, apparently well regarded. It was mixed for me. The first piece was really weird, but really cool. Some story about a family and a marriage and I’m not sure. All Jewish/Ladino/Yemenite music, which was really good. The dancing was also really good. Some parts of the performance were very strange. The middle one I didn’t really love. And then the last one was kind of cool, very joyful (I think Joy was in its name), happy sort of jazz type dancing, it was fun, though a bit repetative. Over all, a good show, but not super memorable.