Attack Theatre adds Mulholland Drive star and so much more to The Kitchen Sink | Dance | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Attack Theatre adds Mulholland Drive star and so much more to The Kitchen Sink

click to enlarge PHOTO: MARA RAGO
Photo: Mara Rago

For its 25th anniversary, Attack Theatre wanted to do something special. The local modern dance company looked to the avant-garde world of filmmaker David Lynch, specifically to Rebekah Del Rio, the Mexican-American singer/songwriter noted for her Spanish rendition of Roy Orbison's song "Crying" in Lynch’s 2001 film Mulholland Drive.

Del Rio will lend her talents as part of the live musical accompaniment to Attack Theatre’s The Kitchen Sink, a mixed-repertory performance running November 15-17 at New Hazlett Theater. The show will feature three pieces described on the Attack Theatre website as “passionate portrayals of everyday life.”

Michele de la Reza, Attack Theatre co-founder and co-artistic director, says using live music has “always been something that’s very much at the core” of the company’s creative process and that Del Rio will add so much to each piece.

“We were looking for someone that had the vocal and emotional power to help drive a narrative,” says de la Reza. “Of course in dance, it’s much more abstract. The singer kind of grounds this abstract narrative that we are creating.”

click to enlarge PHOTO: JONATHAN GREENE
Photo: Jonathan Greene

Joining Del Rio is Grammy-nominated composer and musician Dave Eggar, along with Luke Notary and Andrew O’Connor, all playing various instruments, including the cello, piano, electric bass, and vibraphone. 

“There will be a wonderful diversity of sound throughout the performance … and a diverse physical aesthetic,” says de la Reza. 

She adds that the music, which ranges from acoustic to “bold and rocking with a large sound,” will act in an “incredible dialogue” with new and reworked choreography by her and Peter Kope, along with current company dancers. 

For the milestone anniversary season, Daniel Fleegle, audience and communications manager for Attack Theatre, says they wanted The Kitchen Sink to focus on the company’s future while also paying tribute to its past. “Gordian Knot” serves as a sort of retrospective of the company’s favorite musical selections over the years. “Dressed to Remember” re-imagines an Attack Theatre piece that debuted in 2004 at the New Hazlett Theater. “We were strangers, until we met” will see the return of Jeff Davis and Jil Stifel, two of Attack Theatre’s first company dancers.

click to enlarge PHOTO: DAVE GARSON
Photo: Dave Garson

While each piece is distinct, de la Reza says they all hit on the underlying themes of the entire show — connection and collaboration — that she believes are the reasons why Attack Theatre has been able to operate for a quarter of a century. 

“The trajectory of the company — the trajectory of the work — is so influenced by the people that have come in and out of Attack Theatre that bring their personal brilliance, their commitment to the vision, their passion to the work, whether it’s on the stage, off the stage — that really is so clear about how Attack Theatre has continued to not just sustain but also grow, which is really hard in a nonprofit arts organization,” says de la Reza.  

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