Sunday, 9 November 2014

MagicMoments: Skierlik, Symphony, BE Festival

These magic moments were a rare good idea. Not only do they get plenty of critical action up on the internet, they range across a variety of art forms.

I stopped doing the rubbish bits at the end because I managed to insult someone.

The Belgian attitude to choreography (Waiting @ Traverse)
While I am not adverse to some hot pointe action - and not just on the stage, chuckles Mad Cyril - the freedom of Belgian approaches to dance appeals to my sense of ordered anarchism. Mokhallad Rasem's Waiting choreographed three bodies, hidden behind sheets, which became the screen for a series of recorded interviews, on the topic of, well, waiting. What begins as a shallow survey of first world problems gradually gives way to a confrontation with state attitudes towards immigration and the three part screen, tearing and reuniting with the movements of the trio, becomes a vivid canvas for a fractured and distracted world.

Help from the desk (Front of House Staff @ Tron)
Theatre is not just about the stage, and the FOH team at the Tron are always lovely, even when I turn up and forget which show I am going to see. I want to pause and given all of them a moment of respect.

Good conversations at high volume (Party @ Stereo)
IT WAS HARD WORK TO GET MY VOICE ABOVE THE MUSIC...sorry, it was hard not to damage my friends' eardrums by shouting in them, but Stereo's celebration of seven years was an entertaining mish-mash of DJ, band and performance action. The highlight was the banter, but I also enjoyed being greeted by Louise Ahl, who was in her full pagan ritual outfit, and arguing about Dapper Whasisface in the smoking area. Stereo's atmosphere - hot, intense, fun, creative - is a crucial locus for dialectical discourse both physical and linguistic. That is - it's a good spot for a chat or a dance.

The Netball Blues (Symphony @ Traverse)
Although I haven't quite got a handle on Symphony's trilogy of short plays yet - they might not be aimed at me, but a younger demographic - that bit where the weedy schoolboy tore into a moody blues about his failure to be good at sport lifted the gig/play into a more intense and thrilling fusion of sound and theatre.

Motional Poetry (Skierlik @ CCA)
He didn't help me to pronounce the name of his play when I interviewed him, but Philip Dikotla is frightening talented for a 24 year old. His script Skierlik has a political maturity that shames most attempts by theatre-makers to address 'issues,' but his performance became as much about his elegant physical presence as the words. Lithe and supple, Dikotla took the unpromising format of one man telling his story and lent it a vivacity and dynamism through choreography that adapts a naturalistic posture to the rigours of his tale of racial violence and political manipulation. Even pacing around the stage, or shifting his weight from left to right leg became images of rich, symbolic meaning.

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