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Music and Dance Review

'Pasados por el Mundo' Soars on Its Talent

April 25, 2001|JENNIFER FISHER | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

With hybrid music compositions, it's a challenge--and very tempting--to try to separate and identify the various ingredients. But with several collaborative moments in "Pasados por el Mundo" (World Passages), Friday night at the Fountain Theatre in Hollywood, the results were simply too compelling for dissection.

Directed by dancer Laila del Monte and guitarist Adam del Monte, the program was often drenched in flamenco rhythms--Laila's first solo, "Entre Tinieblas y Alas" (Between Darkness and Wings), featured her priestess-like unfolding line and showers of dense footwork. In his two opening numbers, Adam drew sighs and then energetic exclamations from his guitar.

But it was as a composer with diverse impulses that Adam del Monte really soared. He and his brother Asaf, on bass guitar, and Pedro Eustache on flute, soprano sax and duduk (a double reed instrument), took off in jazzy directions, lighted on playful or haunting melodies and often returned to the embrace of flamenco--combining buleria rhythm with samba, for instance, in the extraordinarily bracing "Sambule."

Each musician flew into stunning solo moments that tugged you into a fresh flight plan, often rolling back toward flamenco but keeping a new vision of it aloft. In "A mi Tito," the Del Montes' 11-year-old sons Shaul (cello) and Enosh (violin) were stern-faced but spirited interpreters of melodic solos. Percussionist Patric Oliver provided protean pulses on cajon throughout, while singer Marysol Fuentes sang evocatively for the more traditional flamenco numbers.

Laila's duet with lyric jazz dancer Ken Morris unhappily fell into the "movie dream ballet" genre; but her experimental solo combining elements of flamenco with belly dance in "Lo que corre por mis venas" (What runs through my veins) was intriguing, doing justice to both forms and, in fact, giving both a promising new complexity.

*

* "Pasados por el Mundo," with Adam and Laila del Monte, Fountain Theatre, 5060 Fountain Ave., Hollywood, repeats May 4 and 5, 8 p.m.; May 6, 3 p.m. $30. (323) 663-1525.

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