L’uomo (as part of the ‘Northern Stage is Curious’ event) presents an entanglement of passion, intimacy and prejudice in a captivating and heart-felt dance theatre duet.
The performance, comprised of poetic gestural exchanges, examines and highlights the concerns same-sex couples feel every day when showing intimacy in public, such as a contemptuous gaze from across the street in response to taking the hand of a partner. The duet refused to hide behind long and complex movement phrases, this personal, intimate and heart-felt subject was handled extremely sensitively and intelligently; the most intense and emotive moments were the ones of a touch, a smile, an embrace, a connection. The performers gave a nuanced and captivating performance – I truly felt the audience disappear during the work, I was completely drawn in by the delicacy and rawness of the piece which tangled, separated and fused on the stage before me.
I always struggle writing reviews like these, for performances that truly blew me away, because it feels to be doing a disservice to the art to put it into words. What I felt while watching this duet was something higher than that which can be expressed in words, it is difficult to articulate the invisible. What I can say is that I have not been able to get this piece out of my mind, the images were gentle and yet this gentle, almost fragile quality is what seemed to pack the hardest punch. My (incredibly emotional) response to the work is a credit to the power of images; with no discernible narrative or ‘story’, more an evocation of a sensibility, a feeling, a memory, it is to the images of the work to make me feel something. And feel something I did.