Dance: Merián Soto’s “El mundo nunca será el mismo”

Sponsored by the Museum of Contemporary Art (MAC) in Puerto Rico, Merián Soto’s “El mundo nunca será el mismo” [The World Will Never Be the Same] will be presented on Saturday, February 27, at 7:00 pm, in the MAC’s interior patio and aired through YouTube and Facebook Live through this account: @MuseoMACPR. This performance takes place in the framework of the exhibition “Anarquía y Dialéctica el Deseo, géneros y marginalidad en Puerto Rico” [Anarchy and Dialectic Desire, Genres/Genders, and Marginality in Puerto Rico] organized by Raquel Torres Azola. El Nuevo Día reports:

“To dance until I die,” expressed dancer, choreographer, video artist, and educator Merián Soto, speaking about her recent solo project “El mundo nunca será el mismo” [The world will never be the same] where she displays aesthetic-somatic improvisation practices. The project is accompanied by video self-documentation that reflects movements in nature, the urgencies of the climatic changes that are affecting us, in addition to dancing with branches, “rediscovered in the pandemic” as a natural prop for social distancing.

Her virtual solo performance, sponsored by the Museum of Contemporary Art (MAC), may be viewed next Saturday, February 27, at 7:00pm in person, in the MAC’s interior patio, free of charge, or through the YouTube and Facebook Live platforms under the @MuseoMACPR account.

“I am excited to participate in the exhibition ‘Anarchy and Dialectic Desire, Genres and Marginality in Puerto Rico, organized by Raquel Torres Azola, at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Puerto Rico,” said Soto. “I participate with two works that frame over 30 years practicing improvisation: the video of my performance of ‘Tú y yo’ at Performance Space 122, recorded in New York City in 1989, and ‘El mundo nunca será el mismo,’ a solo dance and video performance.”

For this performance, the artist was inspired by the current situations that all human beings are experiencing. “In ‘El mundo nunca será el mismo,’ I share improvisations generated and practiced in the last four years: ‘danzas con ramas’ (Branch Dancing), so useful and inspired in the time of COVID; ‘ser/estar con lo que es’, ‘baile de sanación’ [healing dance] where I practice accepting my reality of the moment, which includes the arduous recovery of a broken shoulder; ‘mantenlo en movimiento’ and ‘shake mode’ (sacúdete), where I resist the inertia of old age,” comments the dancer. “The videos are born from self-documentation practices, and include examples from the series ‘Sombras Danzantes’ (Dancing Shadows) which come from the act of documenting my shadow in motion.”

Soto is the creator of Branch Dancing and Modal Practice, aesthetic-somatic improvisation methodologies to dance for a lifetime, which she teaches at Temple University, in Philadelphia, where she has been a professor since 1999. She is known for her choreographic experiments with salsa, in works such as “Así se baila un son” (1999), with live music by Adalberto Álvarez y su son; and “La Máquina del tiempo” (2004) with the participation of pianist Elio Villafranca. She is the founder, with Patti Bradshaw and Pepón Osorio, of Pepatián, an organization of LatinX performance and experimental dance, located in the Bronx, New York, since 1983. Furthermore, she is curator of the “Reflection: Response Choreographic Commission” of the Institute of Dance Scholarship at Temple University. As such, she has featured works by artists such as Awilda Sterling Duprey, Lela Jones, Kathy Westwater, and Marion Ramírez.

Translated by Ivette Romero. For original article (in Spanish), see https://www.elnuevodia.com/entretenimiento/cultura/notas/bailarina-merian-soto-dara-performance-unipersonal-virtual/

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