This spring a small-but-innovative dance company in Southern California called TRIP Dance Theatre premiered a production in a Hollywood theater about what poet Gary Snyder calls "the war against nature." The dance was called "Poisoning the Well."
Using delicate Asian-flavored music, played live, the dancers first appeared carrying water and gathering around a well. Slowly the audience could see the grace and beauty of these dancers, four of them women, literally turned upside down by human desperation, greed, and the raw flow of our "effluent society," including elegantly simplified depictions of "red tides," the vast gyres of plastics in the oceans, and "drunken" trees.
The dance was both gorgeous and upsetting, but called for few words. To better understand, and to introduce TRIP Dance Theatre to a wider audience, Grist asked company founder and choreographer Monica Favand Campagna to talk about her work: