State of Matter

A fusion of contemporary dance and street-dancing, this performance astounds with its libidinous energy

Review by Gareth K. Vile | 06 Aug 2007
State of Matter is balanced carefully between the considered finesse of contemporary dance and the pyrotechnics of break-dancing. The company of eight astound the audience with acrobatics and fierce solos, building to a powerful finale that deserves its standing ovation.

2Faced Dance are a young company, and there are weaknesses. The group pieces tend to be sloppy and unconvincing, and the reflective pieces slacken the pace. Drab lighting leaves the dancers lurking in shadow, obscuring their libidinous energy.

Despite this, the company is animated by stunning passion, hurling themselves across the stage and towards each other, spinning on their heads, human beatboxing, locking and popping in a relentless onslaught of physical prowess. More traditional interludes - including pieces that are subtle reworkings of abstract ballet - demonstrate that the company are more than street dancers; Tamsin Fitzgerald’s choreography straddles modern and ancient forms, allowing the spectacular break-dance space to impress without swamping the discipline of classical dance.

The cast are undoubtedly future stars, and State of Matter marks another step on the journey to integrate hip-hop with theatre. Cool enough for kids, and smart enough for the cognoscenti, State of Matter challenges the staid stereotype of modern dance.