Monday, 23 April 2012

TiLT Dance Platform Night 2, The Kazimiar Liverpool

This article is a follow on to this article written for The Double Negative

Once again I find myself heading towards the Kazimiar, on a cold yet bright evening. My mind is set upon differences at the end of last night we were promised a fresh programme. Therefore should I expect a different atmosphere or should I expect the same mix of the tired and untested. Guess I'll find out soon.

Somehow I find myself being the first one in and after a few cordial hellos I notice someone manipulating inks on an overhead projector to the strains of an electronic score. All very UFO club. This is tonight's overture, though I must say I preferred last night's quiet acrobatics. It provides an unobtrusive backdrop to idly scan the audience, it seems a different mix to last night though there are a few familiar faces there.

I also note there is a familiar face in tonight's programme.

Tonight is already feeling slightly slicker and it's not long before the first act enters the arena. Two dancers (performing under the name dt.Ellipsis') enter the space and begin performing accompanied by Jurassic 5's 'Lesson No.6', I mention this because this section of the performance just seem to mirror that kind of cut 'n' paste approach, the dancers skip to one style another. The music changes and the dancers settle into another rhythm it's during this section of the performance that the dynamic between the performers becomes clear. Their interaction, the way they counter and complement each other is something which is always exciting to watch.

Later I check the programme and it confirmed that this performance was indeed about the interplay of two performers. That was evident through this piece.

The reason I have to check the programme at a later point is because there's barely a moment before into the space there enters four white clad figures. They take the stage for a brief, energetic and somehow earnest performance. Whether it's brevity of Jordan Mullinger's piece I feel I can't offer more.

Already I'm seeing a figure at the top of a flight of stair indicating their readiness. The lights go out and a projection begins, a figure walks across marshland, this figure is soon edited into a jerky, jumping dance. This ends and a solo dancer enters the space where she begins to performance a series of measured, controlled and repetitive movements all in the air of the buzzing, clicking Ryoji Ikeda like soundtrack. Her considered movements provide a counterpoint to some of the more frantic performance I've seen. As much as dance might be about the expressive freedom of movement, it is surely as much about the individuals dancers control over those moments, the control a dancer has over there body. That's the sense a get from watching this dancer. Even when she's joined by a second dancer and the pace increases, there's still that sense of control running throughout the performance. While watching this performance a small voice in the back of my mind whispers 'Merce Cunningham' and that's not a bad thing. The piece ends with a repeat of the video which began the piece, which was intriguing but I wonder if this video could have been better integrated into the piece, it does seem a minor point.

It's interval time; I get the chance to read about the pervious performance, which was Tender by Joe Lott Dance. It's time for reflection. It's been a breathless first half. Without any pauses the acts have come on one after another. It's provided the evening with a drive and energy that seemed to be absent from last night, thought that drive does threaten to blur the performances into one lump. Still I don't know what to expect from the second part of tonight.

Well I already know that due to injury Marc Saad will not be performing. Instead we are going to be treated to an impromptu performance. During the interval the stage has been readied, a set of drums have been splayed across the space. It transpires that this is the duo of Hollie-ann Coleman and Lucy Mercer who 'opened' last night's event. It starts with Lucy and her guitar and Hollie-ann responses to lights concealed in the drums. What is evident is the rapport between the girls on stage, which makes for a pleasing addition to the programme. Though there's a part of me that question how impromptu this is, the romantic in me likes to think that what I'm seeing is spontaneous.

For the final piece we are given a repeat performance of Collaboration which also closed last night. I whole I still feel the same about the piece as I did last night. You can see the potential in this piece and I hope to see its development. Oddly though it's the piece that feels the most unfinished, but that's the nature of this beast?

Regrettably due to being a slave to public transport I have to miss the band Taara.

It has been another night of strong performances thought this night has felt more focused. I might be repeating myself, this platform points towards a core of performers and curators who are willing to share their enthusiasm for their chosen artform. Hopefully this will go some way to strengthen Liverpool's reputation for dance and live art in the north-west and beyond. It's an ambition we all should support.

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