At La MaMa Ellen Stewart Theater on 66 E. Fourth St., the Experimental Theater Club Witness Relocation production of “Daily Life Everlasting” begins before the audience even takes their seats. As the theater doors open and the audience enters, Tyga’s “Rack City” plays loudly while the cast is in the middle of a freestyle dance party, complete with eclectic costumes and dancing rabbits. Though “Daily Life Everlasting” does not follow a consistent storyline, Witness Relocation’s take on Charles Mee’s script is vibrant, loud and full of dance.
The theme of “Daily Life Everlasting” is apparent within the first moments, as the cast sets out to discover how to make a meaningful life. The cast members explore this predominantly through love, and there is no shortage of passionate kissing and intimate touching in this theatrical performance. Occasionally the script dabbles in philosophy when the cast questions meaning, but Plato and Dante are forgotten almost as quickly as they are mentioned, and the show returns to its humorous and freewheeling examination of life.
The set of “Daily Life Everlasting” is arranged to permit an abundance of dancing. The green stage floor is often free of props. Instead, a refrigerator, couch, cot, dresser and other pieces of furniture line the set, where the cast sits attentively when they are not present on stage. Meanwhile, a large projection screen stands behind the stage. At the beginning of the show, the screen shows graphics reminiscent of the inside of a computer. As the show progresses, different scenes appear on the screen, often in black and white. For instance, different angles of an empty bedroom run on the screen as characters make love on the stage below, and a cabin in the woods is projected during a monologue about the allures of settling down. The graphics not only are beautiful, but also add another dimension to the seemingly adventitious actions occurring on stage.
Dan Safer’s choreography is impeccable and adds purpose to each action. From the chaos emerges an impressive synchronization as small as simultaneous pinky movements. Even outside the dance numbers, every movement is perfectly calculated — sex becomes a beautifully rendered fight. Though the music styles vary, the movements always fit the tone and are highlighted by Jay Ryan’s lighting, which changes from spotlights of red and blue to aggressive strobe lights.
“Daily Life Everlasting” is composed of unexpected turns and outbursts. At times, it is calm and complete with slow dancing, while at other moments it is provocative. For example, the show ends in a chaotic dance number complete with strobe lights that finishes with a nearly naked cast. The lack of storyline does not really take away from the
performance — most attention is focused on the flashy dancing and the sheer amount of fun that the cast seems to be having.
A version of this article appeared in the Wednesday, April 15 print edition. Email Willa Tellekson-Flash at [email protected]