In the first work of the evening, Double Act, the stand-up comics have been silenced, their movements rendered dance. The hand-flicks, chin-strokes, and finger-points of stand-up comedians from around the world are brought together to form an intricate and virtuosic choreography. But it is stand-up, nonetheless, and you will be enthusiastically invited to heckle at the dancers, in a performance that shifts between delicate dancing and eager rabble-rousing. You bring the cheers and claps – we’ll give you the tomatoes to throw, and the reason to throw them.
Imagine what might have happened if the Smack the Pony team met the Muppets and decided to make a moving sculpture, or if Monty Python had taken on Pina Bausch in slow-motion, and you’d come close to the evening’s second work, The Mermaid and The Hammer. Set amongst what could be the contents of Mighty Boosh props storeroom, two dancers move through a world of constant transformations, each scenario as ridiculous as the next. Suspending the punchline for each twist of logic, divas, giraffes and mermaids appear and disappear in a circulating game of joke-hunting.
Choreographed and performed by Gillie Kleiman and Karen Lambæk
Photography Eleanor Sikorski
This work was supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England with additional support from ARC, Newcastle College, Pianofabriek, Vooruit and WorkSpaceBrussels.
ARC, Stockton Arts Centre, October 2012
Chisenhale Dance Space, London, October 2012
BELLY of The Beast, Sadler's Wells, London, January 2013