Being 20 in the Twenties when Gershwin was at his best was, as Hemingway suggested, great luck. The Montalvo-Hervieu Company of France took us back there with a stunning and delightful exhibition of energy and grace. This show was greatly enhanced by the stage configuration of dance floor, shanty shed (permitting roof top solos) and a massive video backdrop. The video work was highly complex with many under water scenes, a large sandcastle, the board walk over a threatening sea and a monoshrome slum scene that transformed into colour and activity character by character. The ability of this to share and not dominate the whole stage was terrific and in this era of multi media or layered performances, this was as good as it gets.
All Gershwin’s most enjoyed pieces were there and the pace was kept frenetic and rivetting with the large ensemble of 15 delighting with their dance, emotion and humour.
A great show.
Kryztoff Rating 4.5K
At first I found the show rather offensive. Then I realised it was MEANT to be offensive. Then I spent most of the performance pondering how I was meant to feel. There’s a powerful message in this performance about sex in popular culture and how some disgusting sexualised material goes unnoticed or unchallenged. Despite agreeing with the messages of the performance and understanding why these messages are important the delivery just seems needlessly over-the-top. Yes – I know it’s meant to be extreme, challenging and confronting, but it seemed to be confrontational and challenging at the expense of the choreography.
Kryztoff Rating: 1.5 K
Contemporary dancers from The Melbourne Dance Theatre performed a lovely piece at the hot Fringe venue Arcade Lane. The dancers conveyed all things associated with love: loneliness, sadness, vulnerability, beauty, abuse, violence and passion.
The versatility and flexibility of the troupe of 9 ensures that these messages are resoundingly clear, even to the uninitiated. Also expect beautiful balance poses and some spectacular dives to some world music – not a single English word.
Lighting cues were occasionally slightly amiss. The audio was sometimes mingled with sounds from outside the Theatre and occasionally distorted. However, the dancers drew the focus away from these shortcomings rather successfully.
Only on until Sunday 28th February, the troupe from the Melbourne Dance Theatre are well worth checking out.
Kryztoff Rating: 3.5K
A trio of elegant acrobats grace the stage at The Birdcage. Starting with an a cappella version of Que Sera Sera, a housewife (albeit balancing on a trapeze) ices a number of cupcakes to share with her girlfriend (on another trapeze). The hungry butler arrives on stilts, to serve these cakes. From then on, a battle rages between the two mistresses and the butler over cupcakes, cabbage, and much much more.
The girls present half an hour of fantastic gymnastics, breathtaking feats of balance and fluid motions – save your applause to the end.
Definitely worth a walk to the Birdcage, on Victoria Drive, opposite the Torrens Parade Ground, aka The Big Top.
Kryztoff Rating: 3.5K
Denim is one of those beautifully awkward performances for those unintiated to dance. Why awkward? Because you want to clap, cheer and gasp in awe, but you can’t do so without ruining the mood and flow of this well crafted acrobatic\dance piece. Sit back and just enjoy the human body performing some powerful feats. Then make sure you cheer and clap like nuts at the end. Well done to all involved.
Kryztoff Rating: 4 K
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