Dance review: The articulate passion of Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca's Antigona | Arts
Arts
INDY Week's arts blog

Archives | RSS | Follow on

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Dance review: The articulate passion of Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca's Antigona

Posted by on Thu, Jul 2, 2015 at 2:47 PM

click to enlarge Soledad Barrio, a force of nature in Noche Flamenca's Antigona - PHOTO BY GRANT HALVERSON
  • photo by Grant Halverson
  • Soledad Barrio, a force of nature in Noche Flamenca's Antigona
Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca
Durham Performing Arts Center
Saturday, June 27


The Spanish colloquialism tener duende means to have a certain magic; to have soul. But these are just words doing their best to capture what the body can say in a single step or look. Soledad Barrio, star of Noche Flamenca’s Antigona, has duende—so much of it that it’s difficult to tear your eyes from her. In front of an American Dance Festival crowd at DPAC, Barrio’s steps escaped uncensored from her heart—from the eye of the storm. 

Barrio plays the title role in this production, directed by her husband, Noche Flamenca's creative director, Martín Santangelo. Born in Madrid, Barrio studied flamenco from an early age. Her mother’s family survived Franco’s dictatorship, and that experience shaped Barrio’s upbringing and Santangelo's take on the Sophocles tragedy. As Antigona, Barrio wears many hats: dedicated, selfless daughter to Oedipus, black sheep of the royal family, resistance to King Creon, lover to Haemon and, finally, hopeless victim of her own guilt. This is not your everyday flamenco role, but Barrio plays it with the intensity of a seasoned bailaora.

The show expertly blends two cultures, telling the story of Antigone without straying too far from the cast’s flamenco roots. Half of the billing, in the tradition of flamenco, is the star’s name. The cast performs in a Broadway-like style, giving somewhat showy—and intently humorous—performances as Ismene, Creon and a chorus of dancers that mimics the Greek dramatic tradition. Whether or not you’re a fan of theatricality, the expertise of the performers and Barrio’s presence as Antigona solidify the show.

Barrio performs Antigona’s life—one of unrelenting strife and sorrow—with a sage fragility. Antigona is devoted, forgiving, determined and strong; Barrio channels her pain with finesse and vulnerability. She carries strength in every rhythmic stomp and practiced curl of the wrists. She is the center of it all, and the other characters turn to watch when she enters the spotlight. They sing her name. In defiance of tyrannical decrees, she will fight for her family, no matter the obstacles.

All in all, the performance was heartbreaking, entertaining and tragic. There are few better new ways to experience Sophocles’ tale and the timeworn struggle of his heroine than through the intrigue of flamenco. After the cast had taken their bows and the curtain was drawn, the duende lingered on.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Pin It

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Arts



Twitter Activity

Comments

Here's a shout-out to the dancers and musicians of The Bipeds who are not mentioned by name in this article. …

by The Bipeds on Dance Review: The Many Moving Parts of The Bipeds' 54 Strange Words Don't Always Perfectly Mesh. But When They Do, It's Spectacular. (Arts)

Most Read

Most Recent Comments

Here's a shout-out to the dancers and musicians of The Bipeds who are not mentioned by name in this article. …

by The Bipeds on Dance Review: The Many Moving Parts of The Bipeds' 54 Strange Words Don't Always Perfectly Mesh. But When They Do, It's Spectacular. (Arts)

You probably want to refrain from using ableist language.

by vidvis on ADF Review: Pilobolus's Crowd-Pleasing Dance Is Apolitical. Unfortunately, the World It Inhabits Is Not. (Arts)

I love stories like this.

by JoeJoey on A Villain Burglarized All Three Ultimate Comics Stores Last Night (Arts)

Mr. Woods must have seen a very different production than the one I saw or perhaps he was having an …

by Amy Ginsburg on Theater Review: Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater's Songs Can't Quite Shine Through a Patchy Production of Spring Awakening (Arts)

© 2018 Indy Week • 320 E. Chapel Hill St., Suite 200, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation