Ballet can do anything. And by the looks of the three works that were presented during opening night of Ballet West's season closer, "Pointe/Counterpoint," the art form hasn't even begun to weaken.
Ballet West's versatile members worked with classical ballet movements and injected a healthy form of contemporary moves which weren't much different than the offshoot style known as "modern dance."Hans van Manen's "In and Out" literally kicked things off as the dancers movements ranged in the the extremes - jagged to fluid, strong to uncertain. And in a couple of surprising segments, the artists found themselves connecting with the audience in a more down-to-Earth fashion.
Using closets, neon lights and strong, witty choreography - com-plete with mass-separating lifts, confined wall climbing and various body wraps - the work zipped along.
The male dancers were able to throw their weight around, while the women, with spry moves and sass, shoved back. This work was a delightful way to push the envelope.
Next up was Ted Brandsen's "Bach Moves."
Timing was most crucial in this work. And the emotions of the three movements gave the audience an abstract look into the human experience.
First and last movements were light, but never fleeting, and the middle movement slowed things down a bit with two moving pas de deuxes.
The only complaint - black tights are hard to see on a dark neon backdrop.
"Rapture," choreographed by Lila York, was the perfect evening closer. The rich climatic lifts followed the Prokofiev score.
The opening movement brought to mind meteors flying through space. The second movement could have been conceived as being underwater with lunges, contortions and slow, fluid lifts.
Spiral motifs flashed images of galaxies while quick, whirling bodies emitted various creatures lurking at the ocean floor.
As each work progressed, the audience knew this performance would be different. There can be no turning back. Ballet West can only look to the future.