It’s a paradox that artists in any medium struggle with: The best art comes from personal excavation that unearths what we least want others to see.
In other words, what we hide from the world is what audiences will respond to most. So it is that Mirenka Cechova’s solo docu-dance, “S/He Is Nancy Joe,” strikes a particularly powerful chord as it takes us deep into the confusion, shame and isolation of the transgender experience. (Scissors loom large. Just warning you.)
That Cechova, 30, a native of the Czech Republic, delivers this roller coaster of the soul through comic-book projections and a mashed-up dance language that borrows from hip-hop, ballet and the ooze of melted wax speaks to her theatrical talent. As does her ability to perform so freely within the confines of Flashpoint’s tiny black-box space. Her fractured, loopy narrative feels authentic, and she achieves this through wholly unrealistic means. Every one of her movements is stylized. The visuals that accompany her performance are rough-drawn, often-crude sketches (by fellow Czech artist Milos Mazal, with animation by Tomas Tomsa Legierski). Matous Hekela’s sound composition of warbles and groans is an indistinct landscape of turbulence.