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REACTION + PHOTOS: THE MeLTING BRiDgE

Posted September 12th, 2008

You’re in Mexico City, selling products made in Brazil, talking on your cell phone to a coworker in Germany, trying to get a hold of your dad in Indianapolis. This has probably actually happened to you, maybe with a different set of cities. And if not, it’s at least plausible, right, ever since – so the story goes – globalization started shrinking the world? In THE MeLTING BRiDgE, the third and final installment of The Lucidity Suitcase Intercontinental’s Americas Trilogy, locales from the Bering Strait of Alaska to the Amazon jungle seep one into the other, awash in sound and color, and flexing time into a new (or possibly very old) logic. THE MeLTING BRiDgE is everywhere suggestive of long-buried relationships and connections newly emerging; its portals are liable to swing open at any moment.

<%image(20080912-IMG_0515 web.jpg|350|255|Photo: Bill Hebert (BHphotos.net))%>It’s a strange, yet oddly familiar, amalgam of commercialized ventures, cultural icons and the natural world, intensified by the technological interface happening right on stage in front of us. A large triangular apparatus, which moves above and below the flat bridge built across the stage, features a screen that faces the audience. Using this screen, film footage often provides the backdrop of a scene or links, via image, one scene to the next. Together with the bridge, these two prominent set pieces divide the stage into shifting spaces; what was the ceiling of a hotel room in one scene is the floor of a canal boat in another. These rich visual effects paired with Jaun Gabriel Turbay’s mesmerizing original soundscape yield a rare smorgasbord for the senses.

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Though loosely plotted, THE MeLTING BRiDgE is strong on motif. When Mexico City’s fiery red subway trundles through Zocalo Station for the sixth or seventh time, I connected the underground tunnel to another submerged passageway important to the show, this one in the Arctic.

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The business man thinks his father, an unorthodox anthropologist, may have wandered off an island in the Bering Strait, one that lies close to where a land bridge once connected Asia to North America, and across which humans migrated. In this man’s journey towards recovering his father – or an even longer ancestry – much that may have been counted as lost intervenes again.

–Rebecca Steffy

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Click here to buy tickets for THE MeLTING BRiDgE.

These photos were taken by Bill Hebert. Visit Bill’s website at BHphotos.net.

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