Below are self posted testimonials. Back to Reviews
Gothamist, New York, NY 2009
In the program notes for Art of Memory, Tanya Calamoneri's macabre dance-theater piece about bookish isolation, gifted designer Sean Breault describes his set as a blend of his "fascination with Theodore Kaczynski [the Unabomber] and his 'living quarters,' The Deep South, Reclusive Troglodytes, Swamps, Mystics, Open Heart Surgeries, Beautiful Minds, One's Descent Into Madness, Possessions, Spirits and Kittens that some people put into bags and toss over the bridge's edge." Though no cats are killed nor hearts dissected during the hour long performance, Breault's description aptly conveys Art of Memory's atmosphere: sometimes sullen, sometimes febrile, always strange.
The moody trip, which takes its name from Frances Yates's 1966 book about human memory before printing, begins as soon as you enter 3 Legged Dog and encounter the mesmerizing glass music performed live by Miguel Frasconi. The centerpiece of Breault's delightful set is a closed shack on stilts; to the right there's a grove of trees with book pages for bark, a moon hovers to the left, and dozens of books dangle from the ceiling with Edison light bulbs glowing in the bindings. The lights dim, and three pale ghosts—wom
– Gothamist, NY, NY 2009
Village Voice, NY, NY
The Floating Books
Dark fairy tales at the Ontological's Incubator series
Tuesday, July 24th 2007
Art of Memory
By Tanya Calamoneri
131 East 10th Street
Closed, series runs through September 8
In Tanya Calamoneri's exhilarating dance-theater piece Art of Memory, three eccentric librarians in frilly Victorian-style dresses find themselves trapped in a cavernous library, searching for a way out. With graceful, fluid movements inspired by Japanese butoh, the women frolic on Sean Breault's imaginative set, where books are suspended in the air and stacked in dangerously teetering heaps. From the Brontë sisters to Jorge Luis Borges, Calamoneri skillfully manages to turn her many influences into a cohesive and entertaining 50 minutes.
At the center of the literary chaos is the delightful Lisa Ramirez, who, from a platform above the stage, narrates dark fairy tales that the three women deftly act out. Each story shares the common theme of a female character punished for breaking the rules (the most gruesome being "Bluebeard," in which the title character violently chops off the hands of his disobedient wife to end
– Angela Ashman
New York Times
There’s a lot going on in Company So Go No’s “Art of Memory,” a 50-minute dance-theater romp conceived and directed by Tanya Calamoneri that spans several continents and decades in source materials alone.
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From left, Heather Harpham, Cassie Terman and Tanya Calamoneri in Company So Go No’s “Art of Memory.”
From left, Tanya Calamoneri, Cassie Terman and Heather Harpham in "Art of Memory."
The piece, part of the Ontological-Hysteric Theater’s Incubator series, takes its name from Frances Yates’s study of how human beings retained knowledge before the invention of printing, and its style comes, roughly, from Butoh, the 20th-century Japanese dance form. Just as many contemporary artists in Japan are desperately trying to rid themselves of the Butoh label, many contemporary artists in America are intent on applying it. Neither is easily done with regard to such a relentlessly misunderstood art, whose idiosyncratic master practitioners seem unified only in avoiding definitions.
And then there’s Ms. Calamoneri’s use of “The Library of Babel.” That marvelous Borges story, which plays with the idea of the universe
– Claudia La Rocco
New York Times
Art of Memory features a bewitching trio of nutty ladies, with white-powdered faces and complicated antique dresses. Spurred on by a wickedly enjoyable narrator, Lisa Ramirez, they skitter and sneak through Sean Breaults set, an Escher-like landscape of suspended, looping strands of books.
see www.seanbreault.com for full review of the show.
– CLAUDIA LA ROCCO, New York Times
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