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Founded in Tel Aviv by Lee Sher and Saar Hariri in 2000 and now based in NYC, LEESAAR is “a gutsy, brainy modern-dance troupe” (NY Times) with a highly theatrical approach. Props, costumes, and pantomime punctuate their Gaga-inspired movement to form a delightful brand of avant-garde. In recent program notes, Sher and Hariri wrote, “by seeking the extreme within ourselves we hope to expand our limits for a fresh experience.”
In their new piece Grass and Jackals, they find these extremes in an imagined state of nature. Set against a kaleidoscopic moiré backdrop, the work “transforms the dancers—seven women, clad in gleaming black bodysuits—into exotic, fluidly moving creatures, sexual and fierce.” (New Yorker) A recurring motif of insincere smiles flashed at the audience is at once unsettling and thrilling, an emblem of the company’s longstanding preoccupation with performance anxiety.
The program also includes a duet by their greatest influence and one of the most brilliant living choreographers, Israeli visionary OHAD NAHARIN, performed by guest dancers from his BATSHEVA DANCE COMPANY. Naharin developed the Gaga technique with Batsheva in the 90s and has continued to build and refine its vocabulary over three decades.