One of the perks of working at DS is that we sometimes get a glimpse of all-things-dance before they hit the stage, the TV or the big screen. Yesterday I attended a dance rehearsal for Trip of Love, a brand-new, 1960s/Alice in Wonderland-inspired dance musical that’s slated to hit the Great White Way in spring 2009.
Having no idea what to expect, I arrived at the rehearsal space at 37 Arts hoping to see a few cool moves and maybe even some singing. By the end of the run-through, I was totally blown away.
Because the show is headed to Japan for previews in April, there were Japanese film crews all over the studio doing interviews with the director, choreographer and cast members. I think I even got in the background of a few shots! I took my seat at the front of the studio while the dancers—clad in lots o’ spandex, lycra and tiny tank tops—ran over their moves one last time before the official press-only rehearsal began.
With a full ensemble of musicians set up in the room (a huge drum set, a piano and other instruments I couldn’t even label), the dancers took their beginning poses and started to run through each of their dance numbers from the show. To summarize the show in one word: ENERGY! My favorite routine was “Wipeout,” in which the female dancers simulated surfing and swimming in the ocean—all while balancing on the feet of the male dancers, who were laying on the floor on their backs. Totally impressive! The choreography was fun, upbeat and sexy. Think: lots of hip rolls, shimmying and shaking. You’ll know plenty of the tunes in Trip of Love, like the 60s classics “Downtown” and “These Boots Were Made For Walkin.'”
What was most humbling to me was to see these dancers rehearsing in the studio without costumes, makeup or sets to hide behind. It was so raw that it made relating to these Broadway-bound dancers easy. It was also refreshing to see that, although they are always so perfect onstage, even the best dancers mess up sometimes! Before one of the numbers, two of the girls were questioning the moves they had to perform and during the number, one of them even messed up a bit. Isn’t it nice to know that not everyone can be perfect all the time?!