ODC Dance Company
co-choreographed and directed by KT Nelson and Shinichi Iova-Koga
March 27, 2011 at Novellus Theater, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
Shinichi Iova-Koga collaborates with ODC Co-Artistic Director KT Nelson to create Listening Last, a ODC/Dance full-company work that investigates the impact of human life on the environment. Listening Last features an original soundscape by musician and instrument-builder Dan Rathbun, who incorporates sounds from the natural world and city life with traces of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. For Nelson and Iova-Koga, the excitement of collaborating on this work has been the challenge of uniting their very different movement sensibilities. Iova-Koga describes his technique as generating only “the essential,” while Nelson describes her own movement style as “intricate, kinetic and full-bodied.” In the process of creation, both choreographers have taken pages from each other’s book to form something that is like neither… and both of them.
Q (SF Chronicle) :Shinichi Iova-Koga, whom we might call a nouveau butoh artist, is your collaborator on “Listening Last.” Your styles don’t remotely resemble each other’s. Why did you choose him?
A: A gut feeling. He is such a different choreographer that he has disrupted the way I work, which is what I wanted. I have to tell you that I am not sure what I have come up with here. This is a process piece, which is why I’m going out to find a big rock. Shinichi has introduced a new physicality to the making of dance. That has expanded my understanding of what dance can be.
Q:What is the essence of the difference between your manners of working?
A: I used to do so much planning beforehand, and Shinichi is so much “Let’s talk a bit and go into the studio and work.” He’s more intuitive that way.