Dreams are, by and large, a random jumble of thoughts and experiences remixed by our subconscious. They may not make a lot of sense, but they certainly leave an impact. That’s largely how I felt about Crossroads – a cryptic yet moving meditation on the intersection of dreams and reality, now playing at Source Festival.
Source Festival has paired its three full-length plays with three “Artistic Blind Dates”. The Blind Dates challenge talented artists to mold the core of each full length commission into a brand new companion work. Crossroads offers a multifaceted riff on Georgette Kelly’s Ballast, a deep dive into the tension between ideal dream selves and flawed, strained realities. The trio of DeLesslin George-Warren, Jane Rabinovitz, and Brittney Sankofa started the creative process of Crossroads by recording their dreams for weeks. They then blended the resulting dream journals into a kaleidoscopic vision of their collective subconscious, with dizzying effect.
Delesslin starts the production strolling and singing a jumbled aria with a fine tenor voice. His words are accompanied by looping projections of dreamy images against the back wall of the space. The calm words combine with the odd images to produce a soporific effect.
Soon, Rabinovitz enters to reenact a dream about an amazing performance that’s constantly interrupted by an outside alarm on perpetual snooze. Later, she shifts to a dream about endlessly running on a beach, constantly being diverted from her goal. Inventive use of home video on the back wall allows the play to flow seamlessly from dream state to waking.
closes July 2, 2016
Details and tickets
Finally, Brittney Sankofa enters to describe a perpetual fever dream wherein she’s followed by a stranger who stalks her with gloved hands and rats. Later, she shifts into a lively call and response that muses on fast life and toxic relationships, using voiceover from an elderly woman that could well be Sankofa’s own grandmother. It’s the most moving, well-produced part of a show that can be chaotic as actors crawl, spin, and flail to an increasingly loud soundtrack.
The trio’s creative use of video, music, and fabric enriches their fusion of spoken word and modern dance. The brisk 20-minute production is also enhanced by a lively post-show discussion on the nature of dreams, fears, and inspiration. At just $10 per ticket, Crossroads is an affordable, mind-expanding sampler for Source Festival’s packed calendar of creative offerings.
Crossroads . Conceived and performed by Delesslin George-Warren, Jane Rabinovitz, and Brittney Sankofa . Artistic Direction by Jenny McConnell Frederick . Produced by Cultural DC . Reviewed by Ben Demers .