Sunday, September 7, 2008

Reggie Watts & Ten Tiny Dances

Today was my second day of the TBA festival. I met up with Rose to see Reggie Watt's TRANSITION. We saw his show DISINFORMATION at last year's festival. The performance was directed by the very lovely Tommy Smith, who is also a playwright and we had the pleasure of getting to know when he participated in our Commission! Commission! event for JAW 2007. Needless to say I was looking forward to seeing the show.
Reggie was awesome as always and I enjoyed the use of video. At one point Reggie conducted an interview with someone on the screen about social networking and the internet and the distance but also the intimacy this creates in relationships, which you didn't realize was live until the actress came out on stage with her video set up. However, the biggest payout was when they played a clip from "Teen Wolf", which they had mocked earlier in their performance. I didn't make the connection until they played this clip (jump to 3:40 to see the exact scene) after the show. They had copied it perfectly. Hilarious! The show was entertaining and Reggie is the ultimate "piss-taker" (if you know what I mean).
After the show I ran to my car and drove straight to the Leftbank to see Ten Tiny Dances. I was blown away by last year's performances and had encouraged our new Portlanders Kim and her boyfriend Chad to join me. "It's a Portland Must-See" I said. It's true. Luckily Kim and Chad had got there way before me and saved me a seat. As always the works was packed for this event. I wound up talking to a lady next to me about what she had already seen at the festival and what she was planning on seeing. And it turns out that we might bump into each other at a few events. On my drive home I kept thinking about how wonderful it was to engage in conversation with a complete stranger and how that is SO Portland and very much part of the festival spirit. There were only 8 tiny dances this time but they were very substantial and serious, so you felt like you were getting a full 10. Last year each piece was a mini production and usually involved scene changes or heavy clean up after each performance. They were beautiful, especially to a theater artist. This year it was more about the dancer and the dancing than the effects. I was able to see Mike Barbers face most of the time during the dancing and he looked full of inspiration and awe. It was charming. He's looking for suggestions for the 20th Ten Tiny Dances, so send him your suggestions.

All in all a good night. More to come tomorrow!

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