Rambert2 review: A fresh approach full of breath-taking energy

PUBLISHED: 11:46 01 February 2019 | UPDATED: 12:32 01 February 2019

Conor Kerrigan, Aishwarya Raut and Hua Han in Ramber2. Photo: Nicolas Guttridge

Conor Kerrigan, Aishwarya Raut and Hua Han in Ramber2. Photo: Nicolas Guttridge


After the baroque inspired complexity of Life Is A Dream, which played at the Theatre Royal last autumn, Rambert fans could be forgiven for hankering after something a little less involved.

Salome Pressac, Aishwarya Raut and Mesach Henry in Ramber2. Photo: Nicolas GuttridgeSalome Pressac, Aishwarya Raut and Mesach Henry in Ramber2. Photo: Nicolas Guttridge

This outing brings us a group of works which could not be more different. Rambert2 is an ensemble of dancers who are in training with the company. Theirs is a fresh approach, full of breath-taking energy. The pieces are pithy and simple, without sacrificing anything in the way of sophistication.

Guest Artistic Director, Benoit Swan Pouffer opens the evening with Grey Matter. Set in a smoke filled atmosphere, the music by GAIKA is club-style. One woman trances out and joins the throng in fits and starts. The landscape could be a picture of her hedonist life or a snapshot inside a mind that is lost and found by turns.

E2 7SD by Rafael Bonachela is a duet. It won The Place prize in 2004. The sound track by Oswaldo Macia and Santiago Posada combines spoken extracts from the diaries of a pair of dancers with atmospheric, electronic music. As the pair wind their way in and out of the ideas in the text, their dance becomes a kind of time-line, in which certain memories pop out and others fade into mundane patterns. There is something frenetic, even violent, about the using up of time.

In Killer Pig by Sharon Eyal and Gai Behar things get sinister. Ori Lichtik’s music sounds like a wet rubber glove being wound up and thwacked. The dancers are dressed in flesh coloured body stockings. To begin with, they seem too vulnerable to withstand the intensity of the mechanized score. But it soon becomes clear that the chains that bind this collective also bring it strength.

The tortured and ruthless nature of humanity can be difficult to look at, but the vital force that binds these beings together makes the stage gyrate and tremble, as if these dancers were one, powerful and deadly creature.

• Tickets to the show at the Playhouse in Norwich are available for today’s matinee performance via the website for £8.50-£12 advance

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