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Review: ‘Let It Linger’ Is Greater Than the Sum of Its Fragments


From left, Marilyn Maywald Yahel, Mina Nishimura, Lily Gold and Anna Azrieli in “Let It Linger” by Vicky Shick, at the Kitchen.

Andrea Mohin/The New York Times

“Let It Linger” is a curious title for a dance by the choreographer Vicky Shick. Letting anything linger is not something she tends to do.

Her new work, like previous ones, is composed of many brief sections, and within each, few movements or phrases last very long. Precise, specific actions follow one another in short chains, and Ms. Shick can make these disparate elements flow together enchantingly. Yet the greater surprise is how she can make an hour of such fragments build with cumulative impact, so that a viewer’s mild impatience (“Where did that come from?”) transforms into grateful wonder (“How did we get here?”).

In “Let It Linger,” which debuted at the Kitchen last week in the Lumberyard in the City festival, the second question arises with unusual force when the dance stops so that we can watch a video by Seline Baumgartner. A camera contemplates dead leaves and the sounds of birds and wind: It’s like a “Moment in Nature” segment on “CBS Sunday Morning.” Then the dancers Anna Azrieli and Marilyn Maywald Yahel set a salad onstage and eat it in silence.

The video and the meal are uncommon gambits for a Vicky Shick piece. But both the natural rhythms and the gustatory ones — chew slowly, swallow, take another bite — are characteristic, and so, in a way, is what happens next: Ms. Azrieli blurting out to Ms. Yahel: “I love you! I love you!”

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