Deadly Sins

Deadly Sins
Fecha de publicación: 
25 March 2024
Imagen principal: 

Not all choreographers can say that they have consolidated their own authorial signature or poetics. Because perseverance, coherence and an integrative vocation are needed that in some way allow us to identify common contributions and achievements of a choreographic creation, read as a whole.

Maestra Isabel Bustos has achieved this for a long time. Her pieces tend to be dreamlike frameworks, of emphatic expressiveness and great symbolic significance, which point to confluence, in that concept of dance-theater that she has defended with her dance company Retazos.

Expressive and to a large extent expressionist has been her most recent premiere with the group she leads: Pecados capitales (Deadly Sins), which took the stage of the Martí Theater last weekend.

The choreographer revisits a subject too much addressed, but that always offers other viewpoints: those seven human faults identified and so often punished by the great Judeo-Christian tradition: anger, gluttony, pride, lust, laziness, envy, and greed.

There are so many dramatization of the subject in art, in all of them, that it could become one of the great universal themes of creation, along with love, power, and death.

Isabel Bustos transcends the merely religious, biblical field to propose a parallel with problems of contemporary society. Therefore, there is a decided symbolic treatment in the images, in the dynamics, in the stories proposed.

The metaphor is clear, although in some cases, such as that of lust, it is perhaps too obvious. Much more suggestive are the evocations of other sins, resolved with a more substantial, less easy lyricism... and with plastic solutions of undeniable wisdom.

The cultural references are strongly made explicit. They are harmoniously integrated into the performance. We are talking about a cultured and informed choreographer, as all choreographers are supposed to be.

The use of props, such as the recurring cardboard boxes, enriches its approach; it never becomes pure sensationalism.

The connectors between scenes are not always effective; it seems as if the show backbone is fractured from time to time. But the essential unity is guaranteed precisely by the singularity of a style, which manifests itself even beyond a pattern of movement.

They are the constants of Isabel Bustos, those complex systems on stage, which provoke the viewer, sometimes from crudeness... and sometimes from tenderness.

The cast lived up to so many interpretive challenges. The name of the company already makes it clear: Danza Teatro Retazos. Isabel Bustos not only needs dancers; she also needs dancer-actors.

The program was completed with a revival, Crisálida, by Miguel Azcue, a true display of integration of styles, a performance that, as it is said in the program, goes from circus to break dance, from rumba to pantomime, an essay on identity.

The year has started with a lot of dance, everything seems to indicate that we will have a prodigal season.

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Díaz / CubaSí Translation Staff

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