This weekend, REDCAT is presenting a 1960s performance re-created. In much the same vein, Hana van der Kolk is presenting something new. “Once More, Again, One” is reminiscent of the original postmodern performances. But it stands on its own as a remarkable piece of work, freshening the live arts scene in a unique and contemporary way.
The performance takes place at Five Thirty Three, a suitably named space in the 533 S. Los Angeles building. It is just close enough to gentrified downtown to feel all right, but far enough to demonstrate the sloth of urban development. The “This Is Our Town” billboard with Villaraigosa’s beaming smile visible through the window seems ironic – but entirely appropriate.
The venue is an open former factory, and dancers are socializing and moving about the space before a performance becomes clear. They line up at microphones, they handle the lights, and they perform something strange and almost despairingly rare: creative performance art free of pretense or expectations. The show features music by Prince, Daft Punk, Madonna, Arlo Guthrie and others.
Of course it raises questions – not least of which is “huh?” – and this is part of the appeal in van der Kolk’s quartet. It both inquires and answers, engaging techniques old and new, with a creative voice that rings clear as a bell and with quite a range. This may be credited in part to van der Kolk’s background: with a liberal arts education and a master’s degree from UCLA’s World Arts and Cultures program, she has clearly done her research without compromising her originality.
Performances are at 8:30 p.m. Nov. 14 and 15 in the Five Thirty Three space, located on the second floor of 533 S. Los Angeles St. Suggested admission is $10.