Shown as the second half of a double-bill with A:Version, PITCH is just that – an attempt to reveal the life of a person, in this case Skye Reynolds, to an audience. She wants to explore how an artist can take action rather than avoid it. ‘Why am I here?’ she asks, holding our gaze. ‘I need to stand out. I need help.’ I think of The Apprentice, and shudder.
In a shimmering white, textured cat-suit, designed by Anna Cocciadiferro, Skye tells us lots about herself, dancing extravagantly as she does so. She is demonstrating her worth, performing her CV, ‘I trained as barrister, became a barista’ showing us techniques learned in ashrams or in being a human animal in Edinburgh zoo for a month (as a Human Dancer with Janis Claxton Dance). Her attitude is playful but shot through with tension. It feels voyeuristic watching her crave attention and validation, dancing across the whole space in ever larger moves, fleet of foot and fluid of limb.
Having got this first pitch out of her system, Skye changes into more casual clothes and turns the spotlight on other aspects of her personal life, political and domestic. A sly humour is always just below the surface: in an imaginary recreation of Pina Bausch’s Right of Spring, we play the humbled masses, she, of course, is the virgin, in a red dress. Her political agenda seeps into the story, the causes she supports and work she has done to help those in trouble. It’s a highly verbal piece, reminiscent of Wendy Houston’s similarly intricate and cleverly worded dances, which transmits a lot of meaningful information in about twenty minutes. We get a pocket life story, we see the body dance, we listen to a recording of her daughter singing Misty. It’s a demonstration of how one can live as an artist and have an impact. Shaped by Jo Fong, PITCH leaves you with a sketch of Skye that resonates long after she has left the room, inviting us to put donations to a good cause in an empty box.