Franziska and I went to see Fuerzabruta, the new production by the creators of De La Guarda, and we were left with some questions. In a nutshell, we stood in a large dark room for a little more than an hour while water was sprinkled on us, blasts of air and bits of paper were blown on us, and performers executed acrobatic maneuvers to techno music above us. We felt like we were cramped in a club with people of all ages. The atmosphere was unpredictable, filled with a rush of excitement, a tinge of fear, and an ounce of confusion. The performance was high intensity and had great special effects, but how could a show about nothing cost $70? But after hearing from Tamara Levinson, one of the performers in the show, I realized maybe we aren’t as down and dirty, and “free” as we thought we were…(Ojo: maybe have a few drinks first).
Name: Tamara Levinson
Hometown: Buenos Aires
How did you get involved in De La Guarda and then Fuerzabruta?
When I was 20 years old, I was living in New York City, and I heard through a friend that there was a show from Argentina called De La Guarda. I went to see it and instantly fell in love with the show. I knew it was in my destiny. I hadn’t just stumbled across it; it was a gift that was given to me on so many levels. It was from my country and I felt a closeness to it. In De La Guarda, I met Diqui James, the director. So when he started working on Fuerzabruta about nine years later in Buenos Aires, I just joined in since I was living there at the time. The rest is history.
Which do you like better, and why?
They are both special to me, and they are incomparable. De La Guarda is powerful, electric – a rave of sorts. It’s a party where you could just let go. Just be. Scream, have fun, dance, get it all out. It brought out the younger, “let’s just go have fun and get crazy” side of me. Fuerzabruta is subtle, detailed, mature, beautiful, sensual and mesmerizing. It brings out the mature feminine side of me. Together these two shows have come to me at the most appropriate times in this lifetime and have guided me through my twenties. They have allowed me to discover all the parts of who I am, and continue to search for, as a person and an artist.
Does Fuerzabruta have a story plot and/or meaning besides the cool music and special effects?
I believe everything in life and art has a story and a plot – sometimes it’s just not given to you in an obvious manner. Diqui James created a show that allows the audience to think for themselves and to take their own experiences and the visuals/sounds and interpret them as is. He is speaking to a public who isn’t afraid to get “dirty” and inside themselves and allows them to feel all emotions without limitations. He is letting them create their own ideas of the visuals they are seeing and the sounds they are hearing. Of course, I have my own ideas of what it’s all about, but then if I told you it wouldn’t be as fun!
What are your co-performers like? How were you guys chosen?
My co-performers are great! They inspire me to be better as a person and an artist, but I believe that everybody is a teacher and a student. We are all here to guide each other through life. I learn from the audience every night just as I do from my cast members and the show. That’s what is so great about Fuerzabruta – the audience does it with us! It’s not just 13 cast members, it’s actually 513! This show would be impossible to do without the energy of the audience.
As far as being chosen…I came in from the start, so I helped in the process of the creation when Diqui was making his vision into the reality it is now. All the other cast members went through an audition process. They danced murga (an Argentine dance that is in the show), they ran on the oversized treadmill, and the girls played in the milar (that’s what we call the giant pool).
What’s your favorite part of Fuerzabruta?
My favorite part of being in Fuerzabruta is that I get to play every night, and they pay me for it! I look forward to just simply coming to work and having a place where I can just let go and have fun with people, and to see the audience really enjoy every moment and leave with huge smiles on their faces. Many of them even come back a second and third time! My favorite part in the show, is dancing the murga. I identify with it and it feels really good to my body. It’s a great way of just letting go and simply being.
What are your plans for the future?
I live in the moment. Every second is important, because you never know when those seconds will stop coming. Focusing on the future only takes you away from the present.
Click here for showtimes and ticket info.