New York Times, Feb 2011
The South African choreographer Robyn Orlin creates pieces that seem to belong to a European dance-theater model but that refer to her own country's complex social and political history. Perhaps it's no surprise, then, that Ms. Orlin has a considerable reputation in Europe but has never brought her company to the United States. Luckily there is Peak Performances@Montclair to remedy that situation, when Ms. Orlin opens there with her epic-titled "Walking next to our shoes ... intoxicated by strawberries and cream, we enter continents without knocking ... ." In this piece, Ms. Orlin uses Phuphuma Love Minus, a traditional Zulu a capella choir, as well as a singer, Ann Masina, and the swanker (a male participant in fancy dress competitions) Vusumuzi Kunene in addition to her dancers. It sounds like fun, but with Ms. Orlin, there's usually a little heartache too. (Through Feb. 20.) At 7:30 p.m., Alexander Kasser Theater, ...
ROBYN ORLIN'S American Premiere "WALKING NEXT TO OUR SHOES."
Montclair State University's Alexander Kasser Theater will rock and resound with South African music and dance, February 10-20, when Robyn Orlin's riotously exuberant "Walking Next to Our Shoes.Intoxicated by Strawberries and Cream, We Enter Continents Without Knocking." receives its United States premiere as part of Peak Performances 2011 season.
Featuring ten vividly costumed singers from the theatrically flamboyant Phuphuma Love Minus group, the South African opera/gospel/pop singer Ann Masina, swanker Vusumuzi Kunene and dancers Nhlanhla Mahlangu and Thulani Zwane, the rollicking show with serious underpinnings was seen throughout Europe following its 2009 Paris premiere, where it returned for a week at le Théâtre de la Ville in October 2010.