Pros: Strong physical performances and lovely music
Cons: The theatre wasn’t big enough to house all our dreams
Fittingly, the two performers (Clevillé and Solène Weinachter) begin with the question ‘where do we start?’ The initial answer is playful: ‘with some dancing!’ They plop down a flashing disco-ball and whiz through a selection of social dance steps. Their matching mustard-coloured checked shirts are reminiscent of uniforms worn by staff in menial corporate jobs and the piece shifts continually between the manufactured dreams we are sold, and those we keep to ourselves.
Like friendly guides, Clevillé and Weinachter speak directly to the audience and to each other as they move fluidly between physical story-telling, dance and theatre. As Clevillé mimes to Judy Garland, Weinachter manipulates his arms using coat-hangers. In a virtuoso display of physicality, Weinachter tells the fairy-tale of an old man whose every wish is granted by a magic tree, only for him to lose everything as a result of his pessimism. The coloured blocks which litter the stage speak of the impulse to pick up the pieces and keep rebuilding, but as Weinachter marches about shouting optimistic platitudes the question is posed, ‘according to whose plan?’
The simple dream of boy meets girl is addressed when the performers sit together at the single microphone and tentatively reveal their desires. They move from humour to intimacy with beguiling delicacy, and play on the audience’s expectations as their relationship suddenly appears entirely real, and the stakes unbearably high. Their unpretentious style and use of recognisable music succeeds in involving the audience throughout. When Weinachter performs an appalling rendition of ‘Imagine’ on a toy piano the audience sings along with a thrilling mixture of reluctance, automatism, and sincerity.
The finale draws everything together in a movement sequence which captures the fragility and intimacy of shared dreams with stunning simplicity. Unforgettable.
Author: Joan Clevillé
Director: Joan Clevillé
Choreographer: Joan Clevillé with dancers Solène Weinachter and John Kendall
Booking Until: This show has now finished its run