Review: Cloud Dance Festival, Hush

Lindsey
By Lindsey Last edited 94 months ago
Review: Cloud Dance Festival, Hush

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Slanjayvah "Crazy Joanna"
It might be the last festival weekend for Cloud Dance but spirits were high amongst performers and audience at last night's opening bill at the Cochrane Theatre. The usual diverse bill spanned contemporary, jazz and tango, at its best provoking amusement, escapism, tension and passion.

Sillander and Pascuel's charming "If pains must come, let them be few" raises smiles with its rolling African beats and light touch exploration of happiness within the group of four. Expressive performances make for a gentle, feelgood journey.

Taciturn fill the theatre with a breath of fresh Mersey air. The four female dancers have great chemistry and popular appeal, especially in "If it ain't broke, don't fix it", dancing to stripped back Bloc Party and the Beta Band. Choreographed by New Art Club's Tom Roden, the quartet get their own version of the cheeky "I can do this" and win over the audience with their warmth and vitality. The second and third parts of their triple bill will be presented at the festival tonight and tomorrow.

Sol Dans are quite a surprise. Combining what 'So You Think You Can Dance' would call 'lyrical' with jazz, acrobatics and dance theatre and dressed like athletic Greek gods, they burst on stage with energy, agility and strength, throwing themselves at difficult routine. Impressive, but noticeably nervy on opening night.

An excerpt from Slanjayvah Danza's new work, Crazy Joanna topped the bill. Again drawing inspiration from tango but mining dark passions, the piece looks at domestic abuse, tapping into different periods of history. Beautiful, compelling, awful - bring on the full length piece.

Cloud Dance Festival is at the Cochrane Theatre, Holborn tonight and tomorrow, 7.30pm. Tickets £12/8. Revisit Festivals past at Cloud Dance's video feed.

Last Updated 17 July 2010