Aaron Swartzman

Dance review: ‘Two Love Stories’ tracks our heartbreak

Marissa Rae Niederhauser explores the trance of masculine aggression and the trance of female passivity


Two Love Stories, presented by Linda Austin’s Performance Works Northwest Sunday night, was far from the romantic walk in the park you’d expect from its title. Marissa Rae Niederhauser, Berlin-based dancer and choreographer, cuts down the back alleys and into the dark corners of the game we all play. The game called love.

She plunges to the depths of heartbreak, in all of its repetitive and nauseating layers, and by the end of Two Love Stories, a surface level conversation about relationships isn’t even a remote possibility. The work meticulously opened up every door that pain might hide behind—and journeyed deep into the recesses of the heart, unearthing the unspoken part of love.