Eight Wing Theatre Company (Dragon Keep Playground, New Farm Park)
Duration: 45 minutes
Childhood is an exploration of the senses – physical and emotional. Fear, love, and wonder are stirred and brought to the boil in Lightning in a Kettle.
This is a night-time butoh performance at the Dragon Keep Playground, New Farm Park. Night-lights turn the roots of the Moreton Bay fig tree into a many-pillared temple.
The adult audience spread their picnic blankets in front of the wooden walkway littered with toys, and listen to the accordion lullabye.
With slow, stylised movements the performers approach the audience members directly: to touch a nose, to offer a toy or a balloon, to play. The soundtrack is of giggling children.
Soon they will play with water – splashing themselves and us (gently) – and become fascinated, then bored, with repetitious movements. Soon, the border between teasing and cruelty, and the fear it generates, is explored.
The performers held the audience’s attention during their fluid exploration of the playful and grotesque aspects of childhood.
The final segment commenced with an audience member being invited onto the stage. The performer removed the lady’s shoes and socks and gently bathed her feet in water. The performer poured the water over her own head. Each troupe member performed a final offering, before the accordion lullabye wished us good night.
Lightning in a Kettle has struck a rich vein with their exploration of childhood. The physical movements require a great deal of micro-control, with posture and facial expression expressing and invoking many emotions.
Lightning in a Kettle is a work in progress by Eight Wing Theatre Company, founded six months ago. Artistic director Alana Jess Hoggart and colleagues are to be congratulated on their emotive performance.
Performance seen: 12 May 2012
Reviewer: Shirley Way
Photo: Shirley Way
Cast: Alana Jess Hoggart, Sonia Kwek, Nina Yousefpour, Jordan Gilmour, Soonufat Supramaniam
Posted at Anywhere Theatre Festival http://anywherefest.com/blog/2012/05/review-lightning-in-a-kettle/