Bouge-de-là, Evolution: Body

Review in Issue 11-1 | Spring 1999

In a simple but enchanting beginning to their new production, Bouge-de-là prove that design-led performance doesn’t need to rely on banks of hi-tech equipment, just good ideas. Throughout the performance there are numerous examples of this: a dynamic use of colour and texture, a sculptural quality to the placing of objects and performers in the space. There are times, however, when what takes place on stage seems to be dictated more by the driving and pulsating soundtrack than by the subject matter, an investigation of issues around genetic engineering and human reproduction.

The wordy programme notes give a detailed introduction to the issues and arguments, yet some times the three performers – Paula Harradine, Sarah Theresa Belcher and Lars Henning – present an abstracted dance that draws attention to choreographic qualities of line or shape rather than the theatrical expression of an idea. At other points this is not the case – as for example when bundled cloths transform from hooked-up joints of meat to babes-in-arms. The subsequent scene exploring the anxiety of parenthood and fear of abnormality is simultaneously poignant, amusing and theatrically realised by the performers.

This is the first part of an ambitious trilogy that Bouge-de-là will create over the next three years. With this workload, it is understandable why founder members Aurelian Koch and Lucy O’Rorke have decided not to perform in this piece, but I did miss them. I do, however, commend them for achieving such a visually stunning and thought-provoking production and look forward to the next part of the project, to be premiered at the Streets of Brighton Festival in May.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Feb 1999

This article in the magazine

Issue 11-1
p. 24