Reviews & features: Gareth Vile

12 reviews

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Kataklo Athletic Dance Theatre's Love Machines

23 Aug 20092 stars

Athletic dance without depth

Love Machines provides evidence that a good concept and strong technique is not enough. Based on the works of Leonardo da Vinci, and apparently set in an underground cave inhabited by strange creatures, Kataklo throw together kitsch costumes, a poor…

Lola: The Life of Lola Montez

16 Aug 20092 stars

Biographical drama flamenco-style

The life of Lola Montez is ideal for the stage: an Irish woman who re-invented herself as a Spanish dancer, her fame in the 19th century makes her the natural ancestor of the modern celebrity. Yet this complex story is confused by the rapid pace, and…


9 Aug 20093 stars

Energy and technology come together

Precarious has been upholding awkward multi-media performance art for three years at Zoo, staging an annual ambitious extravaganza that combines dance, words, a storming soundtrack and video installations. Anomie continues their run of hard-edged…

Crime of the Century

9 Aug 20093 stars

Young lives on the edge

Chickenshed’s strength is simultaneously its weakness. The company boasts of its willingness to take on social issues, yet Crime of the Century is undermined by blunt stereotyping. Drawing the link between knife crime and social depravation in simple…

Dancing on your Grave

21 Aug 20083 stars

Songs in the key of death

Dancing on your Grave indulges in gothic vaudeville: an hour of songs about death, sung by ghostly clowns pursuing a most pessimistic vision. After an hour, however, the monomania starts to wear thin. Apart from the odd reflection on lives ill-lived or…

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14 Aug 20084 stars

Moving Taiwanese tragedy

Fortunately avoiding elaboration of the central metaphor - war as chess - this Taiwanese company, Dansmusicians presents a sumptuous and skilled performance. With superb dancers, a tragedy played for pathos not sentimentality and a ravishing soundtrack…

The Factory

14 Aug 20082 stars

Multi-media battle against consumerism

After last year's engaging Druthers, Precarious' blunt economic parable is disappointing. While their approach - fusing rough-hewn choreography, jittery multi-media and over-blown speech - is fascinating, the Fringe atmosphere exposes The Factory as…


14 Aug 20084 stars

Poignant Czech mime

This drama of two men lost in the Antarctic is in danger of giving mime a good name. Using very few props, a howling soundtrack and jumping between human and animal, Vojta Svejda and Jan Benes-McGadie relate their impressionistic story with winning…

Flamenco, Flamenco!

7 Aug 20084 stars

Spanish flavour at the Fringe

While they have a shared heritage, these two shows take radically different approaches to Spain’s national dance. Ricardo Garcia’s Flamenco, Flamenco! features four virtuosos, with the emphasis as much on music as on dancing. Ricardo’s acoustic…


7 Aug 20082 stars

Poetry and motion

Despite Outside In’s good intentions – they help young performers gain experience – neither the bland choreography nor the mediocre dancers’ technique rescues Nycht-Hemeron from its difficult early morning slot. Putatively exploring the passage of a…

State of Matter

7 Aug 20084 stars

Breakdance/contemporary fusion hits the spot

Following last year’s pattern of hip hop informed acrobatics, ragged yet stunning male ensemble dancing and spectacular solos, 2FaCeD DaNcE Company has tightened up its structure and enhanced the showmanship. It remains a forceful display of masculine…

Todos Los Gatos Son Pardos

7 Aug 20084 stars

Arrieritos are aiming for a different audience with Todos Los Gatos Son Pardos. Through six ensemble dances by six choreographers, it meditates on friendship, passion and bravura by adapting flamenco’s signature movements and atmosphere. Elements of…