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FALL PREVIEW / COVER STORY | Dance

Fall's Fresh Faces

September 04, 1997|LEWIS SEGAL

Lloyd Newson, 40, artistic director of DV8 Physical Theatre, an 11-year-old, London-based collective that's defined by its name (DV8 = the verb deviate) as taking a different path than the norm

Look for: The West Coast debut of DV8 Oct. 30-Nov. 2 in the Freud Playhouse at UCLA.

Why he matters: Although Newson refuses to be photographed in any recognizable manner, his company hasn't exactly been shy about tackling subjects widely considered taboo.

In the full-evening "Enter Achilles" on the current tour, the company explores male conditioning, bonding and fantasies, with a special emphasis on denial and repression. Starting with a pas de deux between a man in his underpants and an unclothed, life-size, inflatable sex-doll, the work pushes the limits of expressive freedom with startling juxtapositions of violence and tenderness, outrageous humor and grueling athleticism. It is definitely intended for mature audiences.

The company has thus far produced 10 dance pieces plus three films for television. It does not repeat past productions. And whenever it seems in danger of becoming too set in its ways, or too conventionally successful, it deviates.

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