Sunday, March 19, 2017

Day 202- Riverdance 20th anniversary-Amazing-Benedum Pittsburgh

Riverdance is on its 20th year of touring and I have never seen the show!  I love  to watch dance (see Day 193-Pilbolus & Day 90-Nutcracker ) so I thought that  it was time to see why this show has had such a long run and get my Irish fix on St. Patrick’s Day weekend. My son was home, so even though he needed a push to go, we both were amazed at the show. I overheard several people say “I thought it would be good but did not know it would be this good!”  

Russian Dance, Flamenco too!
I first saw Riverdance on  a television PBS special about 10 years ago. Back then,  I was amazed at the skill of the dance and loved the  mixture of tapping with ballet but nothing compares to seeing it live.  This show started with a foggy stage and the classic haunting flute as the men, and then the troupe, preformed the iconic Irish tapping  with military precision. The whole show was intense with the pulse of the drums and the electrifying rhythms from the dance. At times the tapping was so fast that my ears almost could not  keep up with the pace. As the dancers upper bodies remained  still, your eyes are drawn to the legs and feet with entertaining amazement. (My thighs ached as I watched them and I couldn’t help but wonder  how many  calories they burned as they danced).

The show had a balance of music and dance.  In the song, “The Heart’s Cry,” the lead vocal had an  angelic  pure  sound. The Irish sound was beautifully harmonized with the other singers as they sang about love.  There was also plenty of the traditional  Celtic  sounding music with  uilleann pipes, fiddle, drums, flute and saxophone. ( see show clip here).

Men duel with styles, American vs Irish 

The  show took the audience on a ride from the Irish coast to Spain, Russia, and then America. There were two brilliant Flamenco dances by soloist Marta Oritz Duesto.  Her hand and upper body moved like waves in  contrast to  her pounding feet. The Russian acrobatic men dancers reached amazing heights as they jumped and the girls twirled faster than a top. The most fun was the men’s dance that dueled the looser jazzy “American style,” against the tight  “Riverdance style” of dance.


I particularly enjoyed the  intensity of the all women dance, “Anna Livia” and the  all  male dance, “Thunderstorm."  This show with its energetic  rhythm (either from the tapping,the drums,or the music) made a perfectly amazing St. Patrick’s Day celebration,  I see why Riverdance has entertained for  20 years!  

( Be amazed  by Riverdance from March 17th to 19th at the Benedum Center as part of the Cultural Trust  events or on tour). 

Spiritual Source
Everyone was gripped with great wonder and awe. And they praised God, saying over and over again,”We have seen amazing things today.” (Luke 5:26)

Other Sources
Cultural Trust