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Dancer Alyson Dolan and musician Drew Silverman collaborated on four one-minute duets. / Photo by Carrie Seidman

"Two Words Not Spoken" monologues, one on cancer survivorship performed by Hedda Matza-Haughton and the other on school bullying directed by Hedda Matza-Haughton and performed by teens from Girl's Inc were featured at "Voices of Fuzión" Showcase



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Fuzión family members test their voices

By Carrie Seidman, Herald-Tribune
May 18, 2012

Leymis Bolaños-Wilmott, the artistic director of Fuzión Dance Artists, says the first place she ever danced was in her living room in front of family members – "a safe place where I could explore in front of a supportive audience."

At Friday night’s “Voices of Fuzión” program at the New College of Florida Black Box Theatre she offered the same environment for testing choreographic ideas to a couple dozen members of what she affectionately calls "the Fuzión family" – artists of all ages, shapes, abilities and disciplines who have collaborated with, supported or learned from this always outside-the-box contemporary dance troupe.

There were improvisations, works-in-progress, one-minute wonders and dramatic full-length pieces by everyone from the company’s administrative assistant to seasoned and award-winning veterans of the stage. Each piece was introduced by its creator and audience members were encouraged to leave comments, questions and suggestions on index cards found on their seats.

This made for a rather uneven evening. (Someone later likened it to the early rounds of "American Idol" and I couldn’t really disagree.) Some pieces were in extremely raw form; others showed glimmers of real ingenuity or potential. That was the whole point. This wasn’t about perfection or the cream of the crop; it was about dancing in your living room like no one but loving family members were watching.

And Fuzión gives a whole new meaning to the concept of a "blended" family. Participants in "Voices" included visual artists, a jazz musician, students from New College (where Bolaños-Wilmott is an adjunct professor), an artist from a mixed ability dance company, and a social worker and actress who uses improvisational drama to talk about forbidden subjects.

And don't forget the audience members, who each received a "Fuzión Dance Artists Family" sticker with the price of admission and were integrated into the performance throughout, either asked for improvisational suggestions or solicited for responses to monologues.

Among the highlights of the evening: A powerful solo (her senior project) from recent University of Florida graduate Molly Nicholas; four one-minute music/dance takes on the subject of reliance, by Fuzión member Alyson Dolan and her percussionist boyfriend, Drew Silverman; a wheelchair solo by Dwayne Scheueman of REVolutions Dance Company, and monologues by Hedda Matza-Haughton (dealing with cancer) and some of her students from Girls, Inc. (dealing with bullying). Kaitlin McMullen, one of the youngest company members, showed an incomplete spoken word/dance solo on the subject of “balance” that I sincerely hope she will finish.

There were also, inevitably, pieces that showed less promise and most likely will not be seen again. That was not without purpose; a heralded choreographer once told me that he learned how to make good dances by making a whole lot of bad ones first.

A steady diet of such experimental work would probably grow tedious, but - like most everything Fuzión does - this was unusual, entertaining and a refreshing change of pace.




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