By Jonathan Goetz
Photo, left: Mackenzie Hyden, Michelle Porras, Zayda Estrada, and Sophia Torres in “Spiral Dance”
October 20, 2017 (San Diego/La Mesa) - Bamboozled by Spencer John Powell's Kidz Danz Kompany was energetic, fast-paced and fun to watch. The music selection was stellar and made for an upbeat show; even a toddler in the row next to me was jumping up and down and dancing with the music. My favorite parts were the flips by Michelle Porras, the high energy classical piece “Psalms for the Children of Syria” and the graceful “Spiral Dance.”
Photo, right: Yasmina Devos in “Dear John Part 2 (Love)”
The show began with dancing and hand-painted silks designed by Marjorie Pezzoli and Spanish flavored Elton John music. Erik Jaimes showed wonderful talent with high kicks--practically splits in the air, and dancing partner Mackenzie Hyden was talented; they made a great dancing pair.
Then, the lighting was turned up and transitioned into nostalgic music by Sir Elton John geared towards adults, featuring Erik Jaimes and Yasmina Devos donning red sequin letterman jackets and doing fast dancing.
Photo, left: Erik Jaimes in “Dear John Part 5 (Finale)”
Gianna May took the stage, looking like a movie star, backed up by a quartet of dancers in “Tiny Dancer.”
Next was a lullaby version of “Crocodile Rock” with lead dancer Layla Torres and the entire group choreographed in sync, ending far too soon. Later I learned the number was indeed cut short due to people in the show actually wanting the number cut. The shorter version worked very well, leaving you wanting more.
Photo, right: Lendia Wylie and KDK Dancers in “Dear John Part 4 (Heaven)”
There were the strong, commanding presences of Yasmina Devos in “Your Song” and Zayda Estrada in “Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me” that were truly delightful. Later, the entire audience clapped along with Landon Throm's performance of ”Don't Go Breaking My Heart.”
Louie Hernandez and Aubrey Wheatbread were talented beyond their years in “Psalms for the Children of Syria” and the staging of “Candle in the Wind” was memorable with Taylor Maxwell carrying Aubrey Wheatbread. It looked like a caravan scene; I later learned was designed to mourn the many deaths in Syria.
Photo, left: Max Duncan in “Dear John Part 4 (Heaven)”
“Spiral Dance” featured Visionary Dance Theatre members Eva Anderson, Yasmina Devos, Mia Duncan, Mackenzie Hyden, Michelle Porras and Sophie Torres. All the dancers, without exception, were graceful and elegant; I can see any of them dancing in pricey productions.
There was so much to watch throughout the show, with lots of dancers showcasing a variety of moves. A lot was happening at the same time, which honestly made Bamboozled not baffling (as the dictionary defines the word) but rather the opposite—enlightening, and captivating. It was a fast-paced, upbeat and a wonderful show. To watch the show online, click here and for details on joining Kidz Danz Kompany or Visionary Dance Theatre, click here.
Photo, right: Mackenzie Hyden in “Spiral Dance”
Photo, left: Gianna May in “Psalms for the Children of Syria”