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Jill Homan Randall

Craft, commitment, presence. Thank you for a beautiful evening. From start to finish - I appreciated the attention to detail in every element - the paper program, press photos, Linda Baumgardner's lighting design, staging of the space, casting of dancers, and soundtrack for the evening.

Many months ago I saw the original seeds of ideas first shared, and I loved seeing the piece and concept come together as a whole. The choreography settled into a clear and strong series of images and a powerful journey for the audience.

The work evoked many images for me. Words and phrases coming to mind include: Chekhov's 3 sisters, twins/mirror images, and catching your own image/reality in a mirror. I felt many emotions alongside the dancers: confusion, longing, turmoil, diversion, self reflection, and searching for connection.

Thank you!

Jill Randall, Artistic Director of Shawl-Anderson Dance Center

Shaila Kotadia, dance hobby-ist

Throughout the performance, I was struck by moments that were impressionable if caught in a still shot. The framing and silhouettes made by the dancers were quite memorable as were their expressions. This reflected the many beautiful photos in the program.

Deborah Karp

I know from speaking with Mariah that she spent over a year on this work and that clearly showed. The attention to timing and detail, the use of stage space and the careful crafting that was apparent in all sections of the piece showed a depth of process and a commitment to the work in its entirety. I thought all the elements were extremely well-thought out; choreography, relationship of dancers to one another, lights, costumes, theater design. Toi Toi to Quicksilver Dance!

Deborah Karp
choreographer - performer - dance educator - mother

Francesca Galluccio-Steele

'Children' is one powerful piece of choreography and dance! It is dark and discouraging - almost dystopian...yet it is also heartbreaking, inspiring and transcendent. The dancing and presentation are superb. The many unique partnering poses are fresh and thoroughly communicative. After two viewings I'm convinced the piece really captures the dilemmas and contradictions of humankind in these troubled times. It took great heart on the part of Mariah and her dancers to risk uncovering the depth of feelings and human interactions that are portrayed in the piece. The dance is a call for social justice action and forgiveness. I hope many more audiences will have the privilege of viewing this piece and being moved by it.

Tanya Chianese

Children of Hobbes was a well-crafted evening of humor, horror and contemplation. The overall aesthetic composition of costume and lighting colors combined with the movement and music of the choreography was incredibly satisfying. The performers of Children of Hobbes were stunning, particularly during their solo sections when they drew every focused breath from their audience. Congratulations Quicksilver Dance!

Tanya Chianese, Artistic Director of ka·nei·see | collective

Britt Juleen

It was an absolute pleasure to witness Children of Hobbes. From the start when reading the written statement by Mariah Steele in the program, I knew I was in for something thought-provoking. She created a textured atmosphere onstage of music, lights, and movement that transported me into the world of her 4 dancers and their stories. I was particularly struck choreographically by the solo work and by the multi-layered spectrum of emotions that was conveyed by her concept and performers. The complexity and beauty of human relationships were all present and I was left wanting to see it again.

Janlee Wong

We are all doing a dance within ourselves and with others to try to find our position in society. Complex inner action and interactions between the individuals in Children of Hobbes are delineated in minute ways with movement specific to each, movement that shows yearning to connect to others, whether to sublimate or follow, and shared movement when wanted or unwanted connections are made. In reaction to forces beyond each individual’s control there is experimentation, caring, conformance, defeat, creativity, success. The external and internal struggles are at times exhilarating, thoughtful, frightening or sometimes heartbreaking, as in Jenna’s solo.

The depth of the process for creating Children of Hobbes shines in the layers of meaning and nuance, and it’s authentic and direct communication of ideas and emotion. The piece is beautiful with a clear original voice solidified by the careful integration of the unique movement with music that opens your heart, costumes that make you one of the dancers, staging that makes it all into a world.

Tessa Maurer

Children of Hobbes was an incredibly poignant piece. Throughout the performance, I was able to identify motions and gestures that felt rooted in actions I might do in my daily life. Mariah was able to take these moments and emphasize or intensify them in ways that were artistic without rendering them unrecognizable. Many dance pieces I’ve seen are composed of motions that seem entirely disconnected from my physical reality or that are possible only for trained dancers. Children of Hobbes was engaging and moving because it was able to invoke this empathy. Beautiful work!

Karla Quintero

"Children of Hobbes" was full of wonder and suspense. In addition to the multilayered choreography, I was captivated throughout my viewing of the piece by how the performers were able to define the space, it never felt arbitrary, nor limited by the geometry or size of the room. You could just feel that there was so much thought and imagination put into the performers' pathways and trajectories through space. Even within the traditional proscenium set up, when the dancers ran, their pathways were never limited by the boundaries of the space. I enjoyed watching them used their physicality to transition between internal and external landscapes with clarity and ease. This precision in the shaping and shifting of the space really helped illuminate the delightful nuances in the choreography.

Kristen Bell

Children of Hobbes is a deeply thoughtful and striking work, signaling a new creative chapter in the repertory of Mariah Steele's Quicksilver Dance. The piece had palpable immediacy in the movement, yet Steele's careful choreographic eye and attention to flow also offered us moments of repose, play, and beauty woven into the overall tapestry of the work. I appreciated the earnest investigation of the individual - represented in unique solos for each dancer - that highlighted the nuance and character of each performer. The complex relationships that developed among these individuals over the course of the work, at times harsh and impassive, while at other moments empathic and aware, so astutely reflect the ongoing struggles we see in present day society. The commitment that the four performers brought to this well-crafted work is to be commended - I felt present with them throughout the entire piece, drawn into their world and suspended from my own reality for the evening.

Erin Drummond

I watched the winter sky, states and months away from Shawl-Anderson in November, turn from white to evening blue to an eerie grey, almost pink with streetlamps perhaps or some immanent essence if Winter itself. Such slow momentous shifting lived also in Children of Hobbes; from earnest stepping hummers timid as baby bird-monks, to bare feet on an anguished spine, to resolute regality falling soft-shouldered into seeking eyes, CoH presenced a felt atmosphere, dramatic and ominous as a fall to night. And yet, it felt less a fall than an expansion, as though the dancers—entirely committed and beautifully rehearsed—emerged from and toyed with conduits of a temporal haze, riddled with cultural trauma yet held in the immense shell of a galaxy. Especially in Oona Wong-Danders' solo, I felt a lively confluence of candid human and conjured entity. I love seeing Mariah trust her communion with subtle winds and direct them assiduously into a crafted vessel for others to ride. As I glance up the shadow of a bird leaves a branch moving: disquieting yet lullabic, opening interstices of what-could-be. Beyond diffidence, competition and glory, a sincerity of song. Such is the felt wake of Children of Hobbes.

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