Le Théâtre Talipot, The Water Carriers

Review in Issue 10-3 | Autumn 1998

‘Conceived as a dream’, The Water Carriers is a beautiful spectacle which combines the mixed blood, oral traditions of the Indian Ocean islands with other contemporary and traditional influences to create a sequence of images, scenes and stories which pass dream-like through the imagination.

The river has dried up and a community is starved not only of water but also of its very spirit: a spirit which extends to the birds and animals of the surrounding landscape, whom the company skilfully create. This piece would fail as simple storytelling, as the audience struggle to hold on to a narrative thread to assist in understanding the deep and powerful tale. However, The Water Carriers is more than just a story and, as the performers tap out the rhythms of their emotions with bamboo sticks, one is aware that they are searching for a deeper meaning: the metaphor of the piece – the power of water over (wo)man as we struggle to control the Earth.

Le Théâtre Talipot create synchronicity of movement and sound with their language of slaps and squawks and penetrating polyphonic songs. The four performers with their eight sticks create a spectacle which is total theatre.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Festival
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Aug 1998

This article in the magazine

Issue 10-3
p. 21