By Adelina Fabiano
Using dance to explore ecological balance within our earth at a Toronto theatre
A commentary on the earth’s fragile nature, Biome, presented by Random Acts of Dance, uses choreography and improvisation to explore the natural process of the micro ecosystems beneath our feet working together to maintain balance and order on our planet.
The performance begins with an empty stage with blue light to create a sense of water and darkness. As a few more lights appear, we see two women standing downstage right and left. Our heads move simultaneously from each corner as each dancer creates a sudden sporadic movement with their head.
Like tiny creatures or organisms living in the subterranean ecosystem, the dancers (Julie Grant and Lisa Murray) spent the first half of the performance gliding on the floor, moving sharply and slowly across the entire stage. At times, they interacted with one another, one body overlapping the other in some sort of exchange, like a tangled web.
I was most impressed by the agility and strength of each dancer as she moved spontaneously and organically across the stage. The isolation of body parts was interesting as was their sense of control and fluid gestures.
Although the repetitive choreography could have been a reflection of the chain reaction that takes place within our delicate ecosystem, I would have liked to have seen more variety in movement. My guests and I anticipated a powerful climax and a transformation of music and pace, yet it never really happened.
The music, resembling sound that would accompany a science-fiction film, was well suited to the choreography and overall theme of the piece. However, I still would have enjoyed a moment of intensity and change in sound.
Definitely an appealing concept, Biome is a unique contemporary performance.
-Biome is playing at the 2010 Toronto Fringe Festival in the Factory Theatre Mainspace located at 125 Bathurst Street.
–Biome will be playing from July 2, 2010 to July 11, 2010 on the following days and time: Fri. July 2nd at 8:45pm, Sat. July 3rd at 3:30pm, Sun. July 4th at 10:30pm, Tues. July 6th at 3:00pm, Wed. July 7th at 1:45pm, Thurs. July 8th at 7:30pm, and Sun. July 11 at 5:15pm.
-All individual Fringe tickets are $10 ($5 for FringeKids) at the door (cash only). Tickets are available online at www.fringetoronto.com, by Phone at 416-966-1062, in person at The Randolph Centre for the Arts, 736 Bathurst Street (Advance tickets are $11 ($10+$1 convenience fee)
– Several money-saving passes are available if you plan to see at least 5 shows
Photograph of Julie Grant and Lisa Murray taken by Andrea de Keijzer