The Garage International @ Town Hall, Thu Feb 19
This is a very ambitious project developed by the dancer Shakti in collaboration with other renown artists, the musicians and Keisuke Watanabe whose 100-metre mural provided inspiration for this piece dedicated to the survivors of the 2011 Japanese earthquake and Tsunami. 50 metres of the mural is on display as a backdrop to the dance and Watanabe paints live as part of the performance. He walked 1000 kilometres one year after the earthquake and drew non-stop for ten days recording the images of people, animals, destruction and suffering he saw.
The painting pays homage to the survivors and this is Shakti’s homage using her art form dance. The piece has three movements: the first representing the earthquake with music provided by a 17-string bass Koto and drum. The mood shifts with a change of instrument as Shiv Kumar playing the santoor provides the music for the next part representing the water rushing in and the people trying to escape and finally death. The dancing here is more fluid and graceful – water flows and the dancers flow as well. This segment becomes very emotional as the pain and suffering is depicted in its last moments.
The third movement uses Beethoven’s Appassionata, representing resurrection and reconstruction. The phoenix rises from the dead. There is a beautiful representation of fire on stage and the music creates a sense of calm and beauty after the frenzy of the previous segments.
The theme is that after every tragedy we still have to have hope, to go on living and dancing just as the survivors have. This performance reminds us of this life-force. Shakti dominates the stage for most of the performance, but is partnered with two other dancers at various points.
This isn’t for everyone but dance devotees will find this piece thought provoking.
AppaSSionata- Phoenix Rising From The Ashes continues at The Garage International@ Town Hall until Sat Feb 20.
Book at FringeTIX on 1300 621 255 or adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.