Last night I attended Laurel Tentindo’s performance of Image Action Text at Automata Arts in Chinatown and, BOY, I was impressed with this former Trisha Brown Dancer’s work. Laurel has been in LA for approx. 2 years and I already look forward to seeing more work to come. Image Action Text is about 45 minutes in length straight-through with projected text on what appeared to be a slate gray back-drop. Live music was performed by Miguel Frasconi and other production collaborators included costume design by Maria Garcia and lighting design by Moira Lael MacDonald. Prior to my work as a blogger, I first became familiar with Miguel’s electronics and instrumentarium of glass objects via LINES Ballet when I was the Company Manager. It was a huge deal to see Miguel Frasconi live and it was truly a special evening.... The first half of the performance began with slow intricate movements among the six artists and the movement, paired with the narrowness of the stage, and minimal minimal set design, made for awesome shadows cast on the walls. I found myself, in fact, watching alluring images in action. I can’t speak for other audience members but, I, along with the performers, took a kinesthetic journey through a sonic field created by Miguel Frasconi. I had hoped for more movement in the first half but space limitations were clearly at play. There were certain bouts where movement picked up but costuming choices limited full visibility of dance aesthetic. About 30 minutes into the performance, 3 female artists came out with very interesting puppeteer-esque costuming on their heads. The music changed slowly from glass instrumentarium to electronic music and this is where I found the sweetness of Laurel’s work. The work became much faster, broad, technical, and honed and it was in this section that I could see the artistry shine. Beyond that, as the 3 female artists were clearly “Killing-It” it on stage, I connected with the work and Miguel’s familiar electronic mix. The Music then transitioned and there was a beautiful 2-3 minute section where the 3 female artists were slowly moving as their head-dressings cast shadows of puppetry strings and marionettes against the set. At this moment, I was provoked to reflect upon the notion of artist versus work, as manipulator and how artists can act simultaneously as both puppet and puppeteer. I hope you get a chance to see Laurel's Image Action Text with collaborative performers, Barry Brannum, Alexandra Shilling, Samantha Mohr, Madison Page, and Milka Djordjevich. They have a performance tonight at 8pm and Tomorrow, June 28th. Also, check out Automata Arts' website. They're doing some interesting things there.