WATCH: Pilobolus Dance Company Gives Us Cyborg Realness With Automaton

Acclaimed dance company Pilobolus sent us this behind-the-scenes trailer of its all-new work, Automaton, which gets its premiere at New York’s Joyce Theater on July 16.

The piece, which the company describes as “a cyborg of a dance that takes place in a mirrored world somewhere between Tron and Metropolis,” was created by choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Pilobolus associate artistic director Renée Jaworski, in collaboration with dancers Shawn Fitzgerald Ahern, Matt Del Rosario, Eriko Jimbo, Jordan Kriston, Jun Kuribayashi, Manelich Minniefee and Nile Russell.

“I think this has always been the power of Pilobolus: when you see them move, you see regular human beings doing extraordinary things,” says Cherkaoui. “As an audience member, you feel impossible things become possible.”

We’re not dance aficionados but we know what we like—and mama like!

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  • Spike

    They wouldn’t get very far on So You Think You Can Dance. Why does modern dance always come off like dancer-bation? With that said, the asian guy was HAWTE.

  • jj

    Erik rhodes dead?? is this true queerty??

  • Mike1987

    I have no talent and am awestruck when I see things like this.

  • yaoming

    Looks cool. Is it gay?

  • Belize

    @Spike: “They wouldn’t get very far on So You Think You Can Dance.”

    That snobbish comment would’ve been more convincing had you used a dance competition that doesn’t rely on the voting process. The same process which placed the charisma of Russell Furguson (who is a hip hop dancer by the way) over the technique of Jakob Karr, and the cuteness Kent Boyd over technique of Billy Bell.

    Also, So You Think You Can Dance has had a history of “modern” dancers who can go toe to toe with classicists. Twitch would be an example. Russell, again, is an example given that even though he has yet to “out dance” Jakob, he was still better than majority of his lot which had A LOT of classically trained dancers. And nobody knew that he would initially since everyone just passed him off as a “modern dancer.” What makes you SO SURE that these people don’t have the capacity to do the same thing considering the fact that their showcasing of this style does not have the capacity to accurately measure their skills in other styles?

    Finally, this “dancer-bation” you are referring to takes A LOT of skill that any serious dancer would envy. I’ve met a lot of ballet dancers who can easily copy the general lines of the body with such precision but are having trouble mimicking the so called “ticks” that pretty much make it amazing.

    So there. Maybe you should think about the things you say before passing a snobbish judgment over people who obviously worked hard for their craft.

  • n900mixalot

    They are decent but I am not getting much cyborg out of them. They are too fluid… but hey, if someone likes then, who am I to criticize but a guy with a computer.

  • darkorient

    Damn, that Jun Kuribayashi is one piece of hot ass! But he’s married? WTF? A gorgeous male dancer, straight? What kind of atrocity is this?

  • peehuiltoeju

    WTF IS THIS???

  • Gently Feral

    I’ve loved Pilobolus ever since I ran across them accidentally one night on PBS, oh, about 35 years ago. Even in rehearsals this piece looks interesting, mysterious, and lovely — satisfying on some unidentifiable, deep level.

    No, I’m not a dance connoisseur either. But I can’t wait to see this. I guess I’ll have to content myself with youtube clips in the meantime.

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