As Far As We Are & Bluff (3 stars)

This article is from 2018

As Far As We Are & Bluff

As Far As We Are / c. Ursl Lindelbauer

Vibrant choreography combines with bizarre humour and surprises, concealing political messages

Two intriguingly unconventional pieces from choreographer Helene Weinzierl disrupt the distinction between performer and spectator, and use bizarre humour and spoken word to make oblique political statements.

As Far As We Are begins with four bodies lying collapsed onstage, but as electro beats start to throb, they gradually revive, pulsing and convulsing like fish out of water. The choreography builds to an impressive fever pitch of trance-like pure dance, until one breaks away to sit panting and sipping water in the audience.

Posing questions about choice and responsibility, audience members are then seductively invited to obey or give instructions. Playfully, one dancer 'sells' his colleague to us, displaying his flesh, inviting us to touch. Calling to mind a slave auction, this felt like a biting comment on the commodification of the body.

Bluff again started with pure dance, this time for a trio. Absurd costumes and a rapid film projection signalled to consumerism, and a bombastic recreation of a scene from Titantic was bafflingly funny.

It finished with an inarticulate yet hopeful monologue, and the dancers seemingly at a loss as to how they might end the piece. Weinzierl says she is comfortable with ambiguity in her work – let's hope the audience is, too.

As Far As We Are, Zoo Southside, 9, 11, 13, 17 Aug, 6:25pm, £12–£14 (£10–£12).
Bluff, Zoo Southside, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18 Aug, 6:25pm, £12–£14 (£10–£12).


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