Dance Review: MORE FOREVER (Conrad Tao, piano/composer; Caleb Teicher, choreographer/dancer)

Post image for Dance Review: MORE FOREVER (Conrad Tao, piano/composer; Caleb Teicher, choreographer/dancer)

by Harvey Perr on December 12, 2021

in Dance,Theater-San Francisco / Bay Area


It was clear within minutes, when a piano emerged from the shadows of the blackened Zellerbach Hall stage and pianist Conrad Tao played the first few delicate bars of a haunting melody that More Forever — the collaboration between Tao and choreographer/tap dancer extraordinaire Caleb Teicher — was going to be much more a work of performance art than a mere dance recital.

As a recital, Teicher’s company proved more than up to the task, but even more thrilling were the performers in a quietly mesmerizing roundelay of movement that went from the wryly comic to the lyrical to sudden welcome bursts of swing, the highlight of which was a charming trio accompanied by Tao on a toy piano. Artfully lit by serena wong, the hour reached dizzying heights of brilliance in a duet by Tao and Teicher in which one couldn’t tell if the music informed the dancing or if the dancing informed the music.

Caleb Teicher & Company and pianist Conrad Tao perform the West Coast premiere of More Forever
(photo: Em Watson)

This was the company’s debut performance in the Cal Performances series, but, judging from the gleeful reaction of the audience, they should become regulars. What struck one the most was how loose-limbed Teicher and the dancers were, while, at the same time, they were so beautifully and perfectly precise, even as they tapped, without tap shoes, in a 24-foot-square custom built sandbox stage (Teicher is a founding member of Dorrance Dance). As for Tao, the ferocious attack on the piano at times was proof that the delicacy of the opening moments was just a hint of what was to come.

This is a company that believes that dancing on sand is a form of poetry. And they are absolutely right.

More Forever
choreographer Caleb Teicher
pianist and composer Conrad Tao
reviewed on December 5, 2021
for more info, visit Cal Performances, Caleb Teicher and Conrad Tao

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