Herald Sun, Entertainment, Review
Review by Stephanie Glickman
5 September 2006
One of Chunky Move’s missions is to continually engage with contemporary culture in a variety of mediums.
In Glow, choreographer Gideon Obarzanek teams with Frieder Weiss, an interactive software engineer, to create a powerful dance in which the performer’s body triggers music and lighting.
Many artists try this relationship and the result is often a situation of complex technology overpowering the visceral effects of live dancing.
This is not the case with Glow, which offers audiences a very intimate experience with a solo dancer that is deeply enhanced rather than hindered by Weiss’s contribution.
On two sides of the room, audiences look down on the action in a white rectangle on the floor. We hear every breath and muttering from the lone dancer (either Sarah Black, who performed on opening night, or Kristy Ayre). Towards the end, we even see smudges of blood gradually staining the white surface from a scraped ankle.
Black’s dancing was intense, from tight, ball-like hovers to sustained contortions and fully extended elongations of body.
She transformed from low-lying animal to standing, babbling human and crouching, shaking creature, never once losing her focus.
The movement was unrelenting and so well blended with light patterns and shapes that, visually, it was impossible to separate the elements.
Revolving on her back, Black appeared to draw circles with her toes and fingers. In perfect synchronisation, geometric webs of diagonal lines enclosed and expanded around her body.
This magic was created through fine detail and finesse. All contributors – including Luke Smiles and Paula Levis, whose sound design and costume, respectively, meld with and enhance the environment – made this seamless 20-minute performance highly effective.
The creative team has hit its mark. Bullseye.