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Make Believe Speaks for Itself Actually, It Enunciates Mar 2, 2012

by Adam

The Portland dance ensembler tEEth's Make Believe  is that rare performance that speaks for itself (actually, it enunciates), and should be experienced rather than read about.That being said, I've been asked to write about it, so I'll be brief.

Make Believe is one of those performances that periodically appears in a hostile, conformist environment—like a UFO landing—that causes viewers and critics to ponder the place of the theatre, or, how performance operate on spectators.

It is a piece that is so bracing in its vulnerability and dislocation, and achingly transitory in its tactile, crepuscular imagery, that it subverts the evoked (and unrequited) ideals of eponymous heroes instead evoking emotions in a somber, aimless, and provocative meditation on longing, spiritual desolation, and collective delusion.

From the opening cackling of its performers, to the dancers fingers twittering in each others mouths, Make Believe scales down performance to brief surreal utterances from the gut, playing with gender and cleverly mutating dialog into sounds. Creepy yet enjoyable, tEEth's art is absolute, inviolate, a discipline, a calling, a quest—certainly something that can’t and probably won’t be tamed.

Go experience it for yourself.