Barbecue, Bottles and Ballet

Incongruity can be a powerful thing when it comes to creating memorable arts experiences.

The lively dissonance I experienced by chance over the weekend when a friend and I stumbled upon an outdoor contemporary dance performance at a vineyard which was serving pulled pork sandwiches and “Oreo cookie balls” alongside glasses of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc will stay with me for a long while.

Hats off to Pollak Vineyards for experimenting with this unusual format for the first time and to the dance company concorDance contemporary of Charlottesville, VA for boldly presenting a series of short works in a challenging if rather magical environment.

Dancing in on concrete is no fun, but the dancers acquitted themselves well in a program of diverse moods and styles which ranged from the lighthearted, jazz-inflected Dream Suite choreographed by Veronica Hart to music by Dave Brubeck, to Conversations on Olympus, a thoughtful-graceful series of studies by the San Diego-based choreographer Ryan Beck to music by Sigur Ros.

Oh, and the BBQ was fantastic too.

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