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High Contrast: The thinking behind Luna Negra's "Naked Ape" | Newcity Stage
Fernando Hernando Magadan, from Spain, is a soft-spoken man of 30 or so. So soft-spoken in fact that the squeak of socks on the Marley flooring rang louder than his voice as he gave direction to the Luna Negra dancers working on "Naked Ape." Magadan originally choreographed the piece for Nederlands Dans Theatre, staged in the round and performed in the airy City Hall of The Hague. Magadan said the open space inspired him to create the white, glowing sculptures, made from stiffened, free-standing shirts and pants lit from within, that will be scattered about the perimeter of the stage. Inside the clothes—which drape, rumple and crease as though on invisible mannequins—are light sensors that trigger sounds, allowing the dancers to manipulate the aural environment. With a good portion of the music provided by Bach and the visual impact of simply dressed dancers moving between luminescent, interactive, white clothing-sculptures, the scene feels classical, viewed through a postmodern lens.