Bullying depicted in Dance

Choreographer Michael Mizerany’s dance work Bully is premiered in the Malashock Raw3 dance series, October 18-28, 2012, at the Malashock Dance Studio in San Diego.  Bullying, a most serious subject, not often treated in dance, is a problem experienced by a number of school age children.  Discussions & audience feedback with writers/teachers about bullying are included at some performances.

The image at the right by Raymond Elstad, features dancers Nicholas Strasburg (the Bully) and Andrew Holmes (the Bullied).  Click on the image to see more RAW3 photos. There is extensive material on Bullying available, and a new feature length movie Bully (trailer below).

Bully, the dance work, is unabashedly bold and undeniably risky, in it’s wry and relentless examination of raw intimidation, physical coercion and emotional manipulation. Choreographer Mizerany says, “My new work, Bully, is a very personal story, in fact, it is autobiographical. It is not only about the act of bullying, but how we react to being bullied. How it pulls us apart from the people we love. And how, sometimes, in an effort to hide who we really are, we become bullies ourselves.”

Mizerany’s graphically & impressively tells a painful personal story with strong, iconic choreography. Nicholas Strasburg’s fine performance as the Bully exhibits power and menace. Andrew Holmes’ jarring performance as the Bullied is athletic and gut wrenching, with falls that make one wonder how he avoids physical damage.  Four excellent dancers act as a foil to the two protagonists; Blythe Barton, Kiona Daelyn, Courtney Meadows, and Brittany Taylor.

Bully, a dance work beautifully realized, with a great concept, deserves a better music score than the Kredit tracks.  Perhaps a mix of works like the Bartok String Quartets would have enhanced & supported Bully .

RAW3 also premiered Splinter by choreographer Regina Klenjowski, and previously reviewed Uneasy Surrender by choreographer  John Malashock.

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