Like the original title of the Magritte painting (Ceci n’est pas une pipe) that suggested the theme and title of this piece, Raincoat investigates La trahison des images, the treachery of images in our lives.
We hide behind our images, our painted representations, our raincoats. But the raincoats aren’t raincoats, or not merely. They are masks covering what we are underneath.
Most people don’t want to go naked without their covering, without a protective hood.
RAINCOAT careers between free-wheeling whimsy, assertive conformity, and self-discovery.
Is it, perhaps, a piece about youth? — a time of experiment, of trying on what it’s like to expose oneself, of living without a raincoat, of seeing one’s true self without a mask?
Clear sight is not so simple as it seems, though, in life or in dance. We are what we wear to some extent. For many, perhaps most, the raincoat becomes part of them.
But bit by bit, one or two decide that what they really are is an open, unguarded self.
Wevers’ “This Is Not a Raincoat,” a playful romp about cover-up and disclosure (actually, flashing) that particularly showed off Cheng and Eames in a frisky manner.
Michael Upchurch, Seattle Times
Wevers’ This Is Not a Raincoat, features dramatic undercurves and overcurves alternating with a calm looseness. Dancers wear socks, as in Monsters, to allow them to scoot easily across the floor. Dancers walk en masse, raincoats rustling, shoulders retracting. At one point, the cluster unravels, and you can clearly see the individuals. Bartee never looked better, and all the dancers have a light, jaunty stance. In one fine moment, Eames (who is partnered by Cheng) gestures, suspended in mid-air, and the rest sympathetically respond with similar moves. In another telling passage, dancers move to a voice-over of neonatal and child-like sounds, finally building up to their fully revealed selves.
Gigi Berardi, Dance Magazine
This Is Not a Raincoat
Whim W’Him Premiere
January 14, 2011
Cornish Playhouse at Seattle Center
September 30, 2010
Northwest Dance Project
Mitchell Akiyama, Jad Abumrad
Christine Joly de Lotbiniere