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MikeN

World Class Quarterfinals Discussion Thread

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Ok I gotta speak up.....sitting 24 rows up near the middle and I'm tellin ya,there's no friggin way Devils beat Crown in brass,

Too bad that brass is not judged from 24 rows up.

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I'm thinking it must've been a peculiarly placed shadow, because the FIRST time I saw her dress go up in the theater, I would have sworn that there was some X-rated material there, but the second time it just looked like a flesh-colored undergarment.

All I can say for certain is that whatever was or was not there caused some discussion both at the theatre and here.

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Constantly risking absurdity...this is a theme? And a winning one? are you kidding me??? please! No way on this 'planet' Devils should have won....

ab·surd Audio Help (əb-sûrd', -zûrd') Pronunciation Key

adj.

1. Ridiculously incongruous or unreasonable. See Synonyms at foolish.

2. Of, relating to, or manifesting the view that there is no order or value in human life or in the universe.

3. Of or relating to absurdism or the absurd.

- - - - - -

There is nothing ridiculously incongruent in BD's show, really. No characters making absurd discoveries, no entities interacting in an absurd way, no dramatic action that captures "disorder" or "devaluation". There is some tightrope walking, and some attempt at cirque-like characters, but they don't appear absurd. They appear clown-like. But that's not enough. The only thing absurd about the BD show is that it is lacking in any centralized absurdity in its "characters," stage picture, emotion, or action. Musically, they may capture some level of absurdity, in selection of absurd-themed musical pieces, in innovative arrangement, but visually and in general effect? Nope, the concept of absurdity is glaringly undeveloped, in my opinion.

At least the BD design team avoids the usual "absurdity" pitfalls. Most absurdists go overboard and alienate their audience with abstract, abusive, incomprehensible junk that attempts to thumb its nose at an assembled audience and their reason for attending. Luckily BD avoids that Star of Indiana mistake.

Let's face it, abstract concepts are best relayed through tangible story elements. Vague, abstract, absurdist concepts are best left to floundering government-subsidized performance art theatres.

Character and story are becoming increasingly important, yet the Blue Devils don't use it to relay their theme. Why? Is it an intentional abstraction? The Blue Devils' show, from what I gather, attempts to capture the essence of a beat poem on absurdity. But, a vague theme of absurdity begs for definition. It begs for some concrete interaction, some drama or comedy. It begs for characters or entities or even drill forms to relay a central stage picture that captures "absurdity". I don't see any dramatized "set pieces", to use the Hollywood vernacular. (Ironically, the wild-wigged Crown guard-- in its eerie, elegant, almost expresssionless precision-- seems to capture abstract absurdity better than BD's.)

The concept of walking a tightrope is absurd, I guess. But I want a more heightened dramatization. Pushing someone off a tightrope repeatedly, and the poor cad who insists on trying again--that better captures "absurdity". And it's stirring. And it's full of humanity. But just some sporadic tightrope walking without a context? So what?

The only thing that's absurd here is that the premise goes achingly undeveloped, visually. The gorgeous show floats like a stunning, majestic cloud over a dry, thirsty stadium, moistening the judges score sheets, and moving on with no rain.

Edited by Brutus

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