CoisCéim Dance Theatre
Project Arts Centre, November 9-19
In 1997, CoisCéim produced Reel Luck, a dance performance looking at an Ireland hitting the tip of The Celtic Tiger. Now, over a decade later, they are telling the tale of a very different place.
The production opened on a run-down room in a derelict building, a spectacular set created by Monica Frawley. A table, chairs and an old washing machine were amongst the few objects sparsely filling the space. Flaking shades of cream and grey filtered through the dramatic lighting, setting the dark, tense scene.
The performance asked two questions: “What makes you sad?” and “what makes you happy?” The answers were collected from real interviews, and the responses share the pain and frustration people have experienced since the economic down turn.
Saxophonist Kenneth Edge, also the composer of Touch Me, joined the performers, Jen Fleenor, Olwen Grindley, James Hosty, Robert Jackson, Nick McGough and Emma O’Kane on stage. The dancers glided their way through a genre-defying collection of music, fusing jazz, rock and even an ode to classic Irish tunes.
Bravely choreographed, the piece took the audience from swaying along to gasping at the extraordinary fearless moments. The music and interview segments are interjected by bites of past speeches and photos displaying the journey Ireland has come through. Director and choreographer David Bolger has interpreted these in the most magnificent and startling way possible.
It is not all doom and gloom however. The “what makes you happy?” question leads the production to a more positive note, highlighting the small pleasures that we can find, no matter what direction society is heading.
Dance theatre fans will not be disappointed by CoisCéim’s latest offering. Touch Me is a beautiful creation and mingling modern Irish life effortlessly with creativity and innovation it is known for.
Touch Me runs until November 19th.