Fal fell fallen Sydney 2016
Un passage rapide et efficace en été!
Performing ArtsHub, Lynne Lancaster, Monday 25 January, 2016
Le Guen and Hoffman have developed a totally mesmerising show in a style which they have termed ‘electro-circus’.
‘All that I need to say is that the experience will be unique’
This extraordinary small gem of a work will have you smiling, gasping and wanting more. It is part of the Sydney Festival ‘About An Hour’ series at Carriageworks. Last year the production was included in London’s Mime Festival.
It is a Lonely Circus production from France that examines the split second before and after falling, showcasing le Guen as he dazzles with feats of strength, agility and concentration. Performer Sebsatien Le Guen has spent over twenty years as a tightrope dancer. The work examines time, balance and precision, fall and recovery and the human body vs inanimate objects.
It is actually an extremely structured and precise dialogue between movement and sound, in some ways like Cunningham and Cage, Balanchine and Stravinsky or de Keersmaeker and Reich.
Le Guen is tall, very handsome and distinguished looking. At first, he is elegant in a beautifully cut grey suit and white shirt. By the end of the show he has stripped down to dark blue shorts. He is like a lithe, elegant, feline, late nineteenth century dancing master – at one point he dances on the tightrope . At another there are surfer-like moves. In other segments he poses, Patience on a Monument like (or Rodin’s The Thinker, perhaps? ) entwined sculpturally on top of one of the wooden planks used. Sometimes he falls face down catching and supporting himself just before he hits the floor.
This amazing work is performed in collaboration with bespectacled, curly haired Jerome Hoffman, techno wiz /foley person/percussionist/sound guy. There is a sci-fi like turntable, a metronome, throbbing, deeply pulsating electronic music, the sound of crinkled silver foil unfolding in a bowl and several luminous washers spinning down various spikes. All of these are on the table in his specially set up area on the raised stage. Sound is used to comment on /emphasise/accompany the movement (e.g. a tentative exploratory beautifully pointed foot is echoed by an electronic wibble-wabble).
There is also a joyous Pina Bausch like sequence where at first water is experimentally splashed in a semi circle – this develops into a wonderful running/sliding/ ‘diving’ sequence to a Strauss waltz.
There are no words used apart from a very few in voiceovers. The stage is basically bare. This blank space creates suggestion and lets the audience members filter their own interpretations and symbolism onto the movements, shapes and sounds that the duo create – for example crucifixion and surfing, a fence and a tall building.
The final sequence utilizes an oversize plank of wood, eventually diagonally tilted, with a hook in it, that circles around and around. Le Guen runs up it – but it then becomes almost like a hanging circling hammock as Le Guen then lies resting on it .. fade to darkness.
Le Guen and Hoffman have developed a totally mesmerising show in a style which they have termed ‘electro-circus’ – ‘exploring the sound of circus and creating music to be seen as well as heard.’
Running time an hour (approx.) no interval
Rating: 4 stars out of 5`