Forgetting Natasha (3 stars)

This article is from 2011.

Forgetting Natasha

Multimedia memories with excellent choreography

As a poetic and artistic response to early-onset dementia, Forgetting Natasha is a well-conceived idea with some utterly beautiful moments. The writing, by Anna Mae Selby, is sharply-observed and designed to tug at the heartstrings.

Multimedia artists KMA have created a brilliantly realised projected animation, using flickering, shifting blocks of light to represent the central character’s fragmenting memories. The opening sequence, where hands, faces and bodies appear in briefly illuminated windows, is stunning and makes its point smoothly.

However, in hiring dance artists rather than movement-trained actors to perform a work whose impact relies much more on the beauty of its text than the quality of the physical performance, dancefilm company State of Flux has stumbled slightly. The choreography works the dancers’ bodies attractively as live adjuncts to the projections, but on its own is slight and nothing revolutionary. Too much of the impact is trusted to untrained oration, meaning that Selby’s wrenching emotional beats are often rendered shrill rather than intense.

It’s the combination of images and words that resonate afterwards, though, and with such power that Forgetting Natasha is still well worth half an hour of your afternoon.

Zoo Southside, 662 6892, until 27 Aug (not 17, 24), 12.30pm, £12 (£10).

Forgetting Natasha

Forgetting Natasha

  • 3 stars

Discovering she was losing her memory, Natasha wrote down her life story, only to find she can’t remember where she put it. An immersive multi-layered performance using dance, poetry and digital media that tells the touching story of one woman’s experience of dementia. For this emotional new work State of Flux brings…

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