Dance-Forms 74th International Choreographers’ Showcase

With a punchier show title and a less-challenging start time, this delightful and thought-provoking smorgasbord of contemporary dance would be packing them in.

As it is, at 9.15am the Emerald Theatre in Nicolson Square is sparsely populated. That is a great shame because there is a lot to admire and enjoy here.

At nearly two hours this looks like a lot of dance but it goes by in a whirl of intriguing movement and strong young dance personalities. Time pressures meant I had to leave before the final two numbers (out of a total of 11) and I was really sorry to go.

Variety is the name of the game here. But whether it is Roxanna Lewis’s “String Theory” which combines speech, singing and dance or the tongue-in-cheek pantomime of Douglas Dunn’s “Oh Acis” or the glorious physicality of Susana B. Williams’ “Angel” all the choreography has an honesty and directness that makes it a pleasure to experience.

Part of that honesty lies in the way the dance expresses and extends the music that inspired it. In Shelley Siller’s performance of her own piece “Sol”, Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata seems to flow through the dancer’s limbs and thus out into the audience with a simplicity and directness that is almost childlike and deeply moving.

Likewise Jin-Wen Yu’s “Fine, Without Me/You?” – a quirky love story set to a delicious French score – comes tumbling out of its two performers with all the wit and finesse of the great chansonniers.

All sorts of ideas and emotions are explored in this quick-fire succession of pieces but perhaps the most telling is ‘Singular Movements of Unravelling Truth” performed by Kathy Diehl and Leanne Rinelli which explores ideas of individuality and relationship in a subtle and fluid duet.

The dancers here clearly have a variety of experience. Some, such as Jane Krantz who performs Hannah Myers “La Chica de Rojo” with huge style and character, are professional. Others are perhaps students but all give convincing and committed performances. It’s a joy.

 

 

 

 

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Julie Morrice

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