The Breakout Stars of 2020
In 2018 Kali Uchis released a debut album entitled “Isolation”. Obviously she was ahead of her time. In November, the Colombian-American artist – with a moody, seductive, dance-inducing style – dropped her second studio album, this time mostly in Spanish, “Sin Miedo (del Amor y Otros Demonios)”. (The up-and-coming rapper Rico Nasty can be seen in his lead single “Aquí Yo Mando”.) The album “goes from genre hopping and era hopping, from romantic-retro-orchestral bolero to brittle reggaeton”, Jon Pareles, the Times’ chief pop music critic, wrote this month.
Uchis, 26, grew up between Colombia and the DC-Maryland-Virginia region and had many inspirations and influences, she told Interview Magazine. “The last thing I ever want to do is be a predictable artist. I think it’s great that my fans never know what to expect when I drop a song. “
The year of the solo
It wasn’t just that the coronavirus ended the live performance in March. The need for social isolation uprooted every part of what brings a dance to a stage: suddenly there were no more classes, no more rehearsals. How can you fill this gap? The solo.
This lonely form has created an outlet for frustration, sadness and even euphoria as dance artists continue to find meaning through movement. It is true that some attempts have been sentimental and aimless, but much good has also come out of them. Instagram has lit up these explorations in a steady stream of posts from the start. Choreographers worked remotely with dancers to create films in which the body could be fearless and free. “State of Darkness,” Molissa Fenley’s 1988 solo, revived for seven dancers, was a glittering, harrowing reminder of the performance resulting from inner and outer strength.
One of her interpreters, dancer Sara Mearns, said she sees herself as “someone who has been through really, really tough times but came out stronger and on top in the end”. Yes, dance and dancers are suffering right now. But the solo gave him – and them – a powerful voice. – Gia Kourlas, dance critic for the New York Times