Mmm some fresh work for the Sydney Dance Company by Finnish choreographer Kenneth Kvarnström and designer Jens Sethzman!
Saw their new production ‘Mercury’ last night and it was a wonderfully pure, crisp, sharp and abstract piece of work.
Finnish born Kvarnström has achieved something really bold and visually unique with this new full length work and the dancers performed with so much energy and zest, it was a joy to watch.
The set was really stark and simple with mostly a single round light source above centre stage looking like a Nordic sun in various stages of white, grey and black.. white nights, black nights? Plus some horizontal light effects from the side, creating a visually pure and abstract sensibility against which the dancers’ bodies looked like aching notes on a page. The dance style is a fascinating mix of cutting edge contemporary moves and the choreography combined the ten dancers in astonishing complexities that kept building up towards the finale.
The artistic hightlight for me was set by a scene that opened with bucketfuls of ‘black snow’ spilling onto the middle of the stage. One dancer stood with a long metal stylus, looking like a black samurai with a metal sword resting its point on the ground. He stood in the middle of the black snow and slowly started etching one perfect white circle clockwise and anti-clockwise until his movements melted into one perfect circle. The metal methodically grated against the floor in long stretches and its sound resonated deep into scratchy techno.
The minimalistic, contrasty electronic music kept alternating between slowly resonating bits and fast punctuating tracks with scratchy staccatos building up to complex yet still minimalistic patterns that perfectly complemented the set and the moves.
Afterwards the four of us went out for drinks and nibblies, which was a perfect finish for the night 🙂
If you are interested, check out the Sydney Dance Company website for videos and information.
And finally, considering that Mercury closes in Sydney today, a snippet that brings it home 🙂