I would never claim to have a deep understanding of contemporary dance, but over recent years I seen some contemporary dance which I have really enjoyed. ‘Dogs’ is a new show created especially for the Absolut Fringe and performed in Project Arts Space Upstairs. Using the full width and depth of the venue, with minimal set pieces including a number of chairs and two armchairs placed on what looks like a dark brown rug, but it becomes apparent later in the show is actually a bed of peat. To stage right a harpsichord and a set of drums, are place close to the wall of the theatre.
The show begins with live music from a harpsichord an instrument which I love the sound it makes accompanied by drums and a very elegant soprano sings standing in front of a microphone. Having live music and song always adds a new dimension to a show. Six dancers begin a slow sequences performance to deconstructed music from the harpsichord. Slowly the dance movement intensity increases which are enhanced by the rhythmic beat of a large snare drum combine with the lighting creating an intoxicating atmosphere. The dancers at times move about between the floor and the chairs beginning a wild but choreographed movement on all fours scattering the earth that had been neatly arranged beneath the chairs.
Overall I would have to say Dogs has been one of the most powerful pieces of theatre I have seen among the show at Absolut Fringe to date. Highlighting the number of show at Absolut Fringe this year when we were exiting the theatre, the crew were already turning the set around for the next show which was ‘Elevator‘ however next show up on my list is ‘Flat Pack‘.
© Tom Dowling 2012