Fruitful Ties and Bone Dust – Steinvor Palsson/Mathew Hawkins and Lucy Suggate The Bodyfarm @ Dance Base
Fruitful Ties by former Royal Ballet member, Matthew Hawkins and Steinvor Palsson is outstanding: an elegant, stylish and stylised multi-layered piece, performed to a Concerto Grosso by Handel, it playfully introduces lemons and ties to Hawkins and Palsson's classically inspired choreography. The superb costumes by Pearl reference 17th Century Inigo Jones' masque-dance, close bodice and feathery neckline and hems, wittily designed from ties. The punning title indicates this is also a piece about memory.
A soundtrack, rather like memory, fading in and out, suggests how objects, a lemon for instance, can help recall. Tied together with reins of ties, then stepping in and out of a cat's cradle, they step in and out of past and present: formal Baroque leg flourishes and modern slapstick. A masterpiece performed by two exquisite dancers.
Bone Dust by Lucy Suggate is also accomplished and ironic: a Dance Macabre with a difference. In the dark, out of a scary, billowing black tutu on the floor, a skull emerges. Lucy then talks about dance 'beyond the rot' in a highly amusing soliloquy. So often text introduced by dancers is of poor quality but Lucy is exceptionally talented as dancer and playwright and her dance imitating a cartoon skeleton's movements is a delight.