|Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal in Opal Vapour.
Opal Vapour was great - a high cut above average Fringe fare, probably because it was supported by the Malthouse Theatre and included in their Helium season. It's a very developed work. Dancer Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal and singer/musician Ria Soemardjo collaborated on a thoughtful, well-constructed piece - carefully modulated and broad in influences.
Click here to read my review of Opal Vapour in the Herald Sun on 28 September 2012.
The Faders by Rochelle Carmichael is a really ambitious piece - eight dancers, HUGE, cavernous space at The Substation in Newport. This is Carmichael's most complex work to date. It plays with ideas about desire for fame, celebrity and ideals about the future. There's a fair bit of talking involved - which is usually a dicey proposition in contemporary dance, but here Carmichael manages to find a good balance of text and physical expression. Her dancers (mostly recent VCA dance graduates) are strong technicians and what some lack in vocal delivery they make up for in physical prowess.
The partnering and the choreographic formations shine. Carmichael is really good at curvacous, fluid, sometimes slightly aggressive groupings. (I think this comes from her time with Meryl Tankard...) A strong, earthy physicality permeates the whole piece. Also a highlight is Carmichael's use of the ridiculously deep space - diagonals, lines, clusters, upstage, downstage - she finds a way to use it all.
|Gareth Hart in Ellipsis.
|Media image for One.
Now I haven't seen a lot this year, so unfair to make any sweeping statements or "picks of the fest," but I can say that I LOVED Pants Down Circus. I see a lot of circus throughout the year and most of it is pretty high-quality, skill wise, but it doesn't always engage dynamically or dramatically. This quartet of NICA grads ticks all the boxes for a great show that's kinda cheeky but still friendly enough for the family.
Click here to read my review of Pants Down Circus in the Herald Sun on 08 October 2012.
Melbourne Fringe Festival
28 September - 13 October
Opal Vapour, 21 September - 06 October, Tower Theatre, Malthouse
The Faders, 05 - 07 October, The Substation
Ellipsis, 06 - 13 October, Meeting Room, North Melbourne Town Hall
One, 28 September - 05 October, Meat Market, Arts House
Pants Down Circus, 06 - 13 October, Meat Market, Arts House