Favorite

Gone 4-Ishing 

Dutch dance troupe leaves its home base for fourth U.S. tour.

1868824.t.jpg
Since zig-zagging across the U.S. and Canada on three prior tours, ISH founder Marco Gerris has pinpointed the major difference between North American audiences and those in his adopted Holland: They "have bigger mouths." He's expecting another raucous reception tonight, when his 12-member street-art dance troupe, in their 4-ISH tour, shakes up Playhouse Square as part of its Discovery Theater Series for Families. "Your audiences are much more vocal. They shout. They scream. And it's very nice," says Gerris, a Philippine native who was raised in Belgium. "I like that because we need that energy from the audience."Rightfully so. The hour-long performance blends martial arts, bungee jumping, and high-NRG dance moves with in-line skating and Xtreme sports against a backdrop of black walls and spasmatic strobe lights. Gerris invented the concept in 2000 after a teen career as the Dutch champion in freestyle skate-dancing. "I never saw a show with all this street art onstage. I like to skate. I like to break-dance. I like to beatbox. I wanted to make a show that combined all these disciplines," says Gerris. "It's the combination that makes it all exciting."The onstage adrenaline rush also prompted Gerris, in 2003, to start a "breeding ground" in Amsterdam, where potential cast members train for possible parts in his shows. Today the school boasts a two-year program for 50 students between 17 and 27 years old. And he's started a satellite school in India, with plans to build a third institute in the U.S. within the next two years. "I know it sounds crazy, but I give them a voice, in a way. It's the first time they see something recognizable. Youngsters and theater normally don't work together," says Gerris. "We've found a successful formula."To say the least. After the North American tour, the troupe plans to take the show to China and several European countries. And the international embrace still takes Gerris by surprise. "If people had told me this would be around eight years later, I would have laughed hard," he says. "It's like a dream to keep on going, because it's perfect for me. It's a blessing in a way." ISH performs at 7 tonight and 11 a.m. tomorrow at the Allen Theatre, 1407 Euclid Avenue. Tickets are $10. Call 216-241-6000 or visit www.playhousesquare.com.
Fri., Feb. 1, 7 p.m.; Sat., Feb. 2, 11 a.m., 2008

Latest in Get Out

  • Get Out!
  • Get Out!

    Event picks for this happy week in Cleveland
    • Apr 4, 2012
  • Get Out!
  • Get Out!

    Event picks for this best week in Cleveland
    • Mar 28, 2012
  • Get Out!
  • Get Out!

    Event picks for this transcendent week in Cleveland
    • Mar 21, 2012
  • More »

More by Cris Glaser

  • Kick Your Ash
  • Kick Your Ash

    Veteran C-Town rockers release new CD in honor of the world's most devastating volcano.
    • Dec 17, 2008
  • Food for Thought

    Local chefs dream up on-the-spot recipes to win coveted Iron Fork competition.
    • Dec 17, 2008
  • Riffs & Raffles
  • Riffs & Raffles

    • Dec 17, 2008
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

Calendar

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Staff Pick Events

Facebook Activity

© 2015 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 241-7550
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.


Website powered by Foundation