Working on My Night Moves @ Summerhall

Working on My Night Moves is a tender and captivating piece of performance art that explores and interprets the way women exist in and alter spaces

Review by Sophie Smith | 08 Aug 2019
  • Working on My Night Moves @ Summerhall

Zanetti Productions’ newest piece begins in the hallway. Nisha Madhan introduces us to a feminist exploration of physicality and space, as well as warning us to beware of the large objects that will surround us (and may come towards us) when we enter the room. We spend the first part of the show standing on the stage itself in front of a curtain that holds glittering lights whilst Julia Croft, completely encapsulated in her own work, moves between us. After she tears the curtain down, we watch her move around a large floor light and ladder before we are silently invited to take our seats by Madhan.

The rest of the piece consists of Croft, with a face of pure determination, altering and realtering the space around her with great physical strength and a sense of purpose that is engaging to watch. She does this to a soundtrack that enhances our interpretation of the way she is moving – from music from The Wizard of Oz that plays whilst she briefly wears a Judy Garland-style dress to the beat-heavy dance music that she quickens her pace to. Although its message is not always entirely clear and the piece can move quite slowly at times, with some repetitive motions, the intensity that Croft gives to each action imbues meaning into every movement and makes the show seem as if its very existence is something Croft must fulfil in its enactment.

Original, individual, and at times simply breathtaking, Working on My Night Moves is an exploration into xenofeminism and a future that exists outside of the patriarchal binaries of time and space. Although it may be quite distinct in its nature, its individuality and the depth it allows for interpretation makes it all the more engaging.

Working on My Night Moves, Summerhall (Old Lab), until 25 Aug (not 12, 19), £10-12