Ibiayi Briggs
Nov 22, 2012 2:00AM

Ori Gersht's films and photographs are imbued with a tension that is eventually detonated in a slow motion burst of matter. In Will You Dance For Me?, a peaceful landscape disguises the psychological violence narrated on the adjacent screen.

The film is a portrait of Yehudit Arnon, a Czech dancer and Holocaust survivor. As a prisoner in Auschwitz she was forced to stand outside in the snow after refusing to dance at the SS officers' Christmas party. She promised, that if she survived she would dedicate her life to dance. Arnon went on to found the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company (KCDC) and made good on that promise. 

Rami Be'er, a student of Yehudit Arnon, choreographed "Ekodoom," a piece that alludes to war, destruction, and persecution. The piece is described as "a journey to the gates of hell, interpolated by flights of whimsy." Although I've only experienced "Ekodoom" via Youtube clips, it's serenely minimalist aesthetic with sinister undertones bears similarity to Will You Dance For Me?,  most obviously the falling snow that begins at 1:15. 

Watch a clip of Will You Dance For Me? here.
Read more about "Ekodoom" and KCDC here.

Ibiayi Briggs
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