Fine Arts LA
by Nicole Campoy-Leffler
A New Kind of Backstage Pass
Last Saturday evening, String Theory took the idea of Valentine's Day to a new level of shock and awe. Their signature, large resonant stringed instrument (they install one everywhere they perform) ran strings above the audience's heads, one performer came onto stage in a skirt that she could play, their violinist played her instrument seven different ways, and they finally proved the theory that stilettos are indeed a form of percussion. The most shocking of all was how beautifully they performed. I don't mean to say that my expectations were low. Instead, I mean that they managed to merge their esoteric vision of Valentine's Day, well choreographed modern dance, wild costumes with stilts, custom-made instruments, and traditional instruments into a package as exciting and spectacular as anything you would have wanted to see on any Saturday night. Perhaps that's why they need fifteen members.
The Broad Stage continued in the way of making this a Valentine's to remember. String Theory's performance was one in their series called "After Party with the Artists". Described as nights designed for "those who believe art and fun go hand-in-hand", these performances are followed by a catered party held at a venue outside of the theatre. On Saturday, we were directed to the Fairmont Miramar Hotel where the new restaurant, FIG, provided the catering. Not only were the artists there to meet and receive praise, but some even continued singing and playing music. The party was an absolute success, almost giving couples with no post-performance plans a "get out of jail free" card. They had a room set up with a photographer taking pictures of couples and singles with love-themed captions, an irresistible assortment of desserts, and since the hotel is conveniently located near the Santa Monica Pier, we saw an unexpected display of pink, red, and heart-shaped fireworks. All in all, it will be a difficult evening to top next year.