David Neumann/advanced beginner group believes in making multi-disciplinary dances from scratch, bringing to gesture, word and proximity a delighted embrace of our contradictory lives. Neumann utilizes experimental dance-making approaches with a humorous outlook and an inclusive layering of disciplines to create complex, thought-provoking dance works that push the form. Neumann’s explorations challenge his assumptions on ‘how to make a dance’ giving each work a distinct geography with which the viewers can examine their own assumptions. These approaches are born of the belief that there is always something more to think and feel, always another mind to engage in surprising ways, always a valuable effort in trying to bend the habitual gestures around new shapes.
In spite of his proclivity toward complicated ideas and structures in dance, Neumann is saying something very simple through this blessedly varied and adaptable art form: “As a species, this is what we’re doing right now, and this is what I think about it.
Recent Press for Advanced Beginner Group’s I Understand Everything Better
“Neumann has just entered a triumphant next phase of his work. He has long been one of the most elegantly hilarious dancers in town—Gene Kelly’s gliding strength under a comedian’s sly face—but here he makes something for his company, Advanced Beginner Group, that feels genuinely important, both to the form and to minds of those who see it.”
-Time Out New York
“Both in the text, written in collaboration with the fine playwright Sibyl Kempson, and through a richly collaged sampler of movement styles that runs from modern American dance to classical Japanese theater, Neumann twins his winningly off-kilter humor with heavier forces.”
-Claudia La Rocco in ARTFORUM