Richard Move as Martha Graham at NYLA's Live Ideas Festival. Photo by JulenPhoto.
If imitation is the best form of flattery, then Martha Graham (1894-1991) would preen with delight at Richard Move.
Move has been conjuring the spirit of Graham since 1996. Martha@20, the first of Move’s two-work program at New York Live Arts, which opens the Justin Vivian Bond-curated Live Ideas Festival, fetes her enduring genius and pokes fun at her indefatigable ego.
Calling Move a Graham impersonator, though, isn’t quite apt. They is (Move prefers the pronoun “they” coupled with verbs conjugated in the third-person singular) more an alchemist. Move unearths archival information such as quotes and videos and uses their own communion with Graham’s spirit to present a version of modern dance’s grand dame that’s steeped in historical accuracy yet tonally appropriate to 2017 — Lady Gaga is mentioned with a derisive twist.
To read the balance of my review, please visit The Dance Enthusiast.