The New Art Club performance "Electric Tales"
made most of us laugh a lot and at the same time some of the audience left the theatre early - maybe they were disappointed not to see a typical contemporary dance performance. It is possible that part of the audience is not open enough to experiments and they associate contemporary dance mainly with what was presented by the City Dance Ensemble. Perhaps it is the result of the fact that in Poland we have few opportunities to see what is going on in the contemporary dance field except during the festival in Bytom.
Tom Roden and Peter Shenton brought us an rich mixture of dance, theatre and comedy. The performance was bursting with an absurd, Monthy Python sense of humor. The British played with the widely understood role of electricity in our lives. Starting from the electric discharge that take place in our brains, thanks to which we have a control over our bodies, through the kind of mania of collecting all sorts of gadgets and surrounding ourselves with electric devices that are supposed to make lives easier (or maybe harder), and ending with the electric sparks between people which like the poles of a magnet can bring them together or push away. And everything comes to the question how to find the golden middle/solution/balance which is according to the New Art Club something hidden between the face and reverse of a coin, between the light switch on and off.
The choreography of "Electric Tales" can be called minimal. The British were often ironically repeating very simple, even banal sequences of movement. The dance matched the climate of the absurd in an excellent way. We were not prepared for such an extended use of words in the performance, maybe this is why some viewers couldn’t sink into this game as they just didn’t understand. Dance sections were laced with satirical stories such as the one about the “dark, dark, daaaark dream” in which one of them is discovering a brand new color – only revealed at the end of the evening to be “yerple” (a mix of yellow and purple), brighter than gold and deeper than black.
Not everybody likes Monthy Pyton’s sense of humor, but we let ourselves flow with the Electric Tales, even though the performance lasted 75 minutes. These who laughed at least a bit, and who are eager to get another dose of British absurd humor I encourage to visit their website www.newartclub.com