Delights of love.
by Ada Kisielewska
Audiences at the Annual Bytom Festival and others in Poland are surely used to the many faces of dance theatre today. So, we should not be surprised at the idea of using the stylistics of puppet theatre, as we saw from the Swiss Compagnie Drift. We have already seen their crazy creativity in “Hells Bells & Furtive Folly” – the performance they gave during the twelfth edition of the Bytom festival. Yesterday, we saw them in “Amours et delices”, a less frantic experience then their previous offering.
Choreographed for four dancers, “Amour et delices”, is a heterogeneous story about birth, delight, love, seduction, sex and the compatibility of couples. This complicated plot is combined with a light and witty touch, making the performance a real pleasure. Instead of a resonating drama, we have a sequence of stories loosely related one to another. Expressed with exaggerated movement, contemporary dance was the perfect form to create four puppet-like figures that play at seduction, with their grotesque, sometimes clumsy movement, describing the heroes’ helplessness in matters of the heart.
The scenery consists of a single bed, a table for two and a labyrinth of red passages at the back of the stage in which the dancers get lost as if in the deepest recesses of the heart . They explore the subject of love and eroticism in many ways, but not for a moment is it literal or vulgar. Split into numerous rough and tumbles, chases and funny flirtations the actions lose their heaviness and gain a cheerful dimension.
It is difficult to compare “Amour et delices” to their earlier performance in Bytom. Those spectators expecting another explosion of the imagination from the Jaccard - Schelling duo may have been disappointed. Whereas “Hells Bells & Furtive Folly” surprised us time after time with an incredible freshness of ideas and movement solutions, this new performance is funny and charming but a far cry from the delirious excitement of their previous show.