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January 2004
Review: Random Dance - The Playhouse
Amanda Weaver & Khamlane Halsackda.
Amanda Weaver & Khamlane Halsackda.

Random Dance

The Oxford Playhouse

Saturday 24 January 2004
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By Jenny Enarsson

Polar Sequences gives loud and clear evidence that Random Dance produces some of the best British modern dance today. In three pieces by three different choreographers, the company exhibits an impressive range of style and emotion.

The distinctly different pieces, all of which were created in collaboration with the dancers, are enjoyable not only because of the amazing skills and talent of the dancers. The humour and cleverness in the choreography and the self-assured charisma of the performers lift Polar Sequences to withering heights.

Firstly we are treated to an abstract ensemble piece. At times spastic and at times slow and dreamlike it enchants the audience while telling several stories at once.

The second piece is theatrical and funny, and involves live cooking. While three characters carry on with all kinds of emotional drama in the foreground, a jovial chef calmly carries on cooking upstage before losing his temper and throwing a hilarious tantrum in front of the happily eating and completely unfazed dancers. When the lovely cooking smells reach the stalls, it adds a unique and delightful element to the experience.

The final piece is a definite highpoint of the performance. Dressed in discretely feathered costumes the dancers move back and forth across the stage in an unmistakably birdlike fashion. Against the backdrop of music by Marilyn Manson we are then treated to what is perhaps best described as Swan Lake on speed. This gorgeous and incredibly energised choreography makes it obvious how much the dancers are enjoying themselves, and that is what makes it truly unforgettable.

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