Phrases by Francesca Matthys.
Bodies in Action advocates for the involvement of all, particularly marginalised identities in modern dance. That is completed by way of the curation of their varied occasions corresponding to Motion Lab that creates area for artists to share their works in course of in a protected and sort setting.
As we wait in calm anticipation within the efficiency venue WappArt, the viewers sit on chairs and splay themselves throughout the grassy carpet on this intimately organized area. The backdrop is massive colourfully painted canvases. An area for all, as Inventive Director of Our bodies in Motion Julian Nichols, warmly welcomes us.
The night opens with Ahead to Nowhere, a duet by TwoFold Dance Theatre, a brand new collective made up of Jan Wooden and Laurie Case. The 2 embody a rollercoaster of feelings corresponding to nervousness, confusion and uncertainty, making use of oppositions of their our bodies each individually and collectively. An lively try at discovering that means.
They transfer by way of poignant actions resembling prayer or surrendering. To be absolved from their humanity or to be enlightened by a deeper expertise. Slightly Beckettesque. I instantly ponder on the Kundalini Yoga Sutra ‘The opposite individual is you’ as Jan and Laurie mirror one another and show tender moments of assist and understanding. The pair share lovely moments of weaving out and in of one another, fluidly exploring the detrimental area that separates their our bodies. That separates us as human beings.
Jordan Boyle is wearing what seems to be like layers of striped pyjamas. The beat begins to blare as their eyes develop vast and targeted. Boyle’s improvisation possesses a hip hop like high quality as they dance with no inhibitions. As if being alone of their bed room. Their motion is huge and agile that excites the viewers with its charisma. The bouncy nature of the actions reveals remnants of home as Boyle grooves throughout the area. Their presence is fascinating and hyper conscious as their eyes scan the area for curiosities and even threats. It is rather simple to be utterly captivated by Boyle’s motion, particularly by way of improvisation the place the ultimate vacation spot is usually a thriller.
The Drawback, the headline efficiency of the night catches us off guard as a radio information report and different discussions round prejudice begins to fill the area with context. The controversial voice of broadcaster Piers Morgan may be heard. We’re in the true world with actual issues that infiltrate into our complacent viewing expertise. ‘On Air’ says an indication that hovers above an inflatable mattress.
We’re on edge. We’re floating above water. We should survive.
Performer Moses Ward enters the area wearing layers, shades of black and brown. Ward’s two hooded jackets allude to the detrimental stereotypes and worry positioned upon black male our bodies at this time, merely dwelling their lives. That is contrasted although by the sensitivity of speech as he declares ‘I nonetheless love you’ and proceeds to ask for consent to the touch his fictitious different who resides on the inflatable mattress. His steady repetition of ‘Could I?’ May also be seen as a plea for relaxation and a plea to exist in his physique in security and freedom.
Ward proceeds to dreamily have interaction in embodied dialog with the mattress. Superb liquid repetition. As Ward lastly rests in stillness, the literal air beneath him is stolen as an eerie Piers Morgan illustration deflates the mattress. What does it imply to stay in a society the place the assist beneath you is abruptly taken away? It is a motif all through the work, as Ward should repeatedly reignite his assist. It’s a very actual second in very actual time that enables for a way of breath and self reflection for onlookers. One could say that the mattress is a illustration of his human expertise, of his mortality that he should struggle and take care of.
Ward begins to bounce uneasily, pushed by his hips, pushed by worry, by pressure? Topic to another person’s needs. These moments of surprising shift in rhythm that break from the domesticity of life, dialogue and ruminative movement are potent and intriguing. Ward is a good looking mover, who’s bodily storytelling is imbued with pleasant tone and growth. His relationship to the item is rigorously curated, parallel with an enormous use of the item.
As he prepares to go away the area, armour intact once more, we’re reminded of simply how a lot we every carry in our human vessels. How although our inside landscapes are so complicated, we have now no alternative however to face the world and do all of it once more. Maybe a contemplation on care, on resilience, on consciousness of self and different.
The Drawback choreographed by Julian Nichols in collaboration with performer Moses Ward, improvisation carried out by Jordan Boyle in collaboration and with steering from Julian Nichols. Ahead to Nowhere choreographed and carried out by Jan Wooden and Laurie Case. Each have been carried out on the twenty first & twenty second July 2023 at WappArt in London.