This article is from 2009

Created by innovative Queensland-based Zen Zen Zo Physical Theatre, Zeitgeist comes to the Fringe loaded with intrigue and unabashed sex appeal. According to director, Lynne Bradley, audiences can expect ‘55 minutes of nightmarish fantasy and eight gleaming, bare, Australian physical theatre bodies – it’s like walking into a Dali painting.’

But the naked flesh isn’t gratuitous. Japanese dance style Butoh is a key inspiration for Zen Zen Zo, and it’s common to see dancers bare and painted white, as a sign of stripping away the performer’s social mask. ‘Butoh is one of a number of influences upon our dance-theatre style, along with burlesque and cabaret,’ says Bradley. ‘All these forms originate from a shadow space, where the things we wish to remain unseen are exposed to the light.’

Zeitgeist, with its cigarette-puffing Sloth Women and thigh-thrusting Porn Zombies, is about challenging perceptions, turning social norms on their head and provoking thought. ‘I hope the show will bring people back to their humanity, to the cutting-edge of life,’ says Bradley. ‘Let it be a warrior call to live bravely and fearless, as my company members do.’

C, 0845 260 1234, 5–31 Aug (not 17), 10.55pm, £9.50–£11.50 (£8.50–£10.50).


  • 5 stars

Courageous, visually spectacular, emotionally engaging production of raw, provocative dance theatre, inspired by Japanese Butoh, burlesque and cabaret, performed by infamous Australian physical theatre company Zen Zen Zo. Played to packed houses across Australia.