Éowyn Emerald & Dancers: Your Tomorrow
- Kelly Apter
- 27 August 2021
Jazz swaying meets contemporary moves in this Fringe dance affair about a loved-up couple tackling stormy weather and chucking chocolate about
As the Dance, Physical Theatre and Circus section of the Fringe steadily grew (pre-Covid), it brought with it a plethora of the second two, not so much of the first. Those looking for straightforward, choreographed dance often found slim pickings. Which is one of the reasons Éowyn Emerald & Dancers was such a breath of fresh air when the company performed in Edinburgh four times between 2013 and 2018. So it seems appropriate that in a year when there's a relatively tiny amount of live performance at the Fringe, Emerald has once again come up with the goods.
Originally based in Canada, the choreographer relocated to Scotland in 2017, and for her new work, Your Tomorrow, she has worked with two locally-based dancers Daniel Navarro Lorenzo and Katie Armstrong. The jazz standards entertaining us as we arrive pave the way for a 1940s love story, complete with tweed jacket, summer dress and even a vintage picnic flask. Armstrong dances alone until Navarro Lorenzo catches her eye – and her shoulder – tossing a piece of chocolate in her direction (one of over 100 Ferrero Rocher placed and thrown during the show). Once they're paired up, we're treated to several hip-swaying jazz dance duets to the likes of Dave Brubeck's 'Take Five', upbeat and filled with love and happiness.
But as Emerald's aim for Your Tomorrow was to show how human relationships can help us navigate stormy seas, it's not all plain sailing for our loved-up couple. A shift in tone, music and choreographic style takes us down a more serious, contemporary road, with the duo holding and carrying each other, the movement heavier but no less engaging. Quite what role the aforementioned chocolate has to play is a mystery, however. Armstrong and Navarro Lorenzo have enough skill, talent, chemistry and watchability to carry this duet on their own: the little foil-wrapped balls serve only as a distraction.
Éowyn Emerald & Dancers: Your Tomorrow, MultiStory, until Sunday 29 August, 2.30pm, £10.