zac pennington

The Parenthetical Girls go for the fantastical

Now, about those technical difficulties...

Zac Pennington fronts the Parenthetical Girls/Nim Wunnan

By Nim Wunnan

To be grand is not the same as to be massive, loud, or ambitious. Grandness lives or dies by scale and tone, and requires more careful balance than a simple spectacle. Wednesday night’s TBA performance by Parenthetical Girls and a starry roster of collaborators didn’t need to be big or loud to complete the world opened by their cycle of five, expansive Privilege EPs; it needed to be grand and spacious and mythical. It was, and it was worth the hype.

The mix of dance, classical instrumentation, performance, and a stage band was thoroughly mashed and shuffled — the dancers and the orchestra were used in earnest rather than simply standing in as signals that This is Serious and Artistic. Besides a few moments when members of Classical Revolution PDX played up the straight-backed reserve expected of people holding classical instruments perhaps a bit too much, each member of the party was on equal standing.

The long and ambitious evening began with a contemporary orchestral score by Jherek Bischoff performed by Classical Revolution, leading to a solitary but powerful dance by Allie Hankins, then a set by members of Golden Retriever, and finally everything was put to bed by the Parenthetical Girls performance, which fit every name on the program on stage at once at least for a moment.

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