Stasis The Sedate
Christina Dionysopoulou Stigma
EDIFICE Dance Theatre Tenome – eyes on hand
Stasis‘ The Sedate opens with a dancer sat in an Ikea bag at one end of the stage, and another sat on the floor sewing at the other. ‘Are you ready for it?’ the dancer shouts, which sets an expectation that is not delivered upon in this exploration of friendship that focuses on the negative and cruel aspects of group dynamics. The fun is forced, the minimal choreography to blaring techno is aimless and the beats not fully used as dancers rock side to side. While we watch the four friends traverse an evening out that involves a deliberately violent attack, it is difficult to see the message in the piece.
Christina Dioysopoulou’s psychological and physical anguish in Stigma vibrates through every tormented muscle. Her movement is complex, introspective and she delivers an enthralling performance. She hunches over in emotional pain, her back turned from the audience hiding her inner ravishing dialogue as she writhes, shakes and struggles to cope and contain the twisted internal fuse. Christina is powerful and captivating, her choreography unique as she unwinds with rippling arms making her back muscles dance. She turns and confronts the audience and stares. You look closer to see her eyes begin to move, to dance, her face becoming manic, contorting, mouth stretching, teeth exposed. A serious piece from a serious artist, that pushes the boundaries of her body to create a distinctive language and an remarkable performance.
EDIFICE Dance Theatre accomplished choreographers Carmine De Amicis and Harriet Waghorn take us into a mythical smoky underworld of blind creatures, that skillfully uses light to explore each others’ insect, skeletal-like bodies of thrust rib cages and sharp arms, thinly covered in nude cloth and eye-covered head pieces. An absorbing array of scenes with every moment wonderfully filled with intricate pas de deux and quatres to the heart beating loud base that kicks off with ear splitting static. The five highly trained dancers further elevated the piece, beautifully melding the anonymous anatomical features with ballroom sequences infused with seamless contact that creates a continuous dialogue between their bodies.
Resolution Festival reviewed at The Place on 23 Feb.