TCPalm: Savion Glover puts on a show of dancing genius at Stuart's Lyric Theatre

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Magnificent. Famed hoofer Savion Glover gave a show that took down the house last night in a performance at the Lyric Theatre in Stuart that was nothing short of genius. Audience members head-bopped, clapped, swayed to the beat and whoo-hooed as Glover, as if in a trance, traced the soul of every flamenco lament with every part of his feet.


Before the red curtains parted, the faint tap-tap-tapping on a hollow platform left the audience restless, eager for more. A slight crescendo of sound and there was Glover his feet moving so fast it was impossible to sync what you saw with what you heard. Alone on stage he moved with unheard music, eyes cast down at his feet, a splash of sweat released from his forehead crashing on a foot then instantaneously whisked away.


A man dancing alone in a room, unaware of onlookers only in touch with sounds held inside his head. He looked up and pure joy lit his face. Soon, from stage right, entered a Spanish guitar player. (Because there was no program it was impossible to identify the talented musicians who were part of the show).


From the first za-zing of the guitar, Glover faced the guitarist and began to produce the pounding movements of flamenco. It was as if the two were caught in a call and answer, a "Deliverance" kind of duet, unlike anything I have ever experienced. Glover was more than percussive. He was something new and original. His center of gravity low, his legs less connected to air than to the earth. This is not the tapping of Gene Kelly or Fred Astaire. This is street with passion, angst and joy rolled into the roiling sound that makes it almost impossible to stay in one's seat.


Dressed in a soon-to-be sweat-stained red shirt over black T-shirt and slacks, Glover wore a close-cropped beard and mustache with this signature dreads caught up in a bunch at the back of his head.


He was next joined by an electric bass and percussionist and singer Carmen Estevez, dressed in floor-length peach culottes, slung low on her hips secured by a black sequin belt and worn with a silver vest. She gathered the wide-legged pants and sat on a square drum from which she produced a galloping thrumming to accompany Glover and her own wailings of flamenco songs sung in Spanish. She and Glover were mesmerizing. He working to answer her calls, she swinging her waist-length hair in time to the drumming.


For most of the show Glover remained silent but when he spoke it was softly and with delight. He is a performer of the first degree.


What: Savion Glover

When: 7 p.m. Feb. Thursday

Where: The Lyric Theatre, 59 S.W. Flagler Ave., Stuart

Tickets: $60

Box office: 772-286-7827