Friday, April 25, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Time flies and then it stops

Dancers Nichole Canuso and John Luna in 'Return Return Departure,' a collaborative dance/gallery experience at sunset with music by Michael Kiley commissioned by the American Philosophical Society.

Time flies and then it stops

Just before sunset you arrive at the American Philosophical Society gallery tucked behind Independence Hall. You enter the gallery, view the exhibit, "Tempus Fugit: Time Flies" -- a beautiful study of the kinds of time we perceive: geological time, eternal, atomic. It makes you think about it, slows you down from your busy day. You are told to pick up a rock and a flower. It feels a little funereal, but you do and cross the street to the garden where you place the rock on other rocks and press the flower in a book. You sit on the grass or a chair and realize there are two lovely dancers beginning to move among the rocks placed like a river’s edges. They film each other falling, running, moving lightly. The music is soothing, sounds like it’s live but coming from another part of the garden. A bell tolls the hour. It’s over. But you don’t want to leave.

-- Merilyn Jackson

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About this blog
Toby Zinman's night job since 2006 is theater critic for the Inquirer. She also is a contributing writer for Variety and American Theatre magazine. Her day job: Prize-winning prof at UArts, author of four books about four playwrights (Rabe, McNally, Miller, Albee), and doer of scholarly deeds (winner of five NEH grants, Fulbright lecturer at Tel Aviv University, visiting professor in China). Her 'weekend' job as a travel writer provides adventure: dogsledding in the Yukon, ziplining in Belize, walking coast-to-coast across England, and cowboying in the Australian Outback.

Wendy Rosenfield has written freelance features and theater reviews for The Inquirer since 2006. She was theater critic for the Philadelphia Weekly from 1995 to 2001, after which she enjoyed a five-year baby-raising sabbatical. She serves on the board of the American Theatre Critics Association, was a participant in the Bennington Writer's Workshop, a 2008 NEA/USC Fellow in Theater and Musical Theater, and twice was guest critic for the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival's Region II National Critics Institute. She received her B.A. from Bennington College and her M.L.A. from the University of Pennsylvania. She also is a fiction writer, was proofreader to a swami, publications editor for the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, and spends all her free time working out and driving people places. Follow her on Twitter @WendyRosenfield.

Jim Rutter has reviewed theater for The Inquirer since September, 2011. Since 2006, he covered dance, theater and opera for the Broad Street Review, and has also written for many suburban newspapers, including The Main Line Times. In 2009, the National Endowment for the Arts awarded him a Fellowship in Arts Journalism. Thames & Hudson released his updated and revised version of Ballet and Modern Dance in June, 2012. From 1998 to 2005, he taught philosophy and logic at Drexel, and then Widener University. He also coaches Olympic Weightlifting for Liberty Barbell, and has competed at the national level in that sport since 2001.

Merilyn Jackson regularly writes on dance for The Inquirer and other publications. She specializes in the arts, literature, food, travel, and Eastern European culture and politics. In 2001, she was dance critic in residence at the Festival of Contemporary Dance in Bytom, Poland; in 2005, she received an NEA Critics’ Fellowship to Duke University’s Institute for Dance Criticism. She likes to say that dance was her first love but that when she discovered writing she began to cheat on dance. Now that she writes about dance, she’s made an honest woman of herself, although she also writes poetry.

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