Ariel Ariel review

Here is a review of our performnace on 25th May 2018 of Ariel Ariel at Chisenhale Dance Space in London, also with ‘Maria da Luz Ghoumrass’ and ‘Anthologyofamess’.

“In Danai Pappa and Neal Spowage’s duet Ariel Ariel, the two artists construct rudimentary games from rough and scrappy materials. Beginning by dynamically transforming the space by drawing lines of electrical tape across the stage, they chase one another around a crude obstacle course; ducking and jumping at opposite sides of a circle. It’s stupid and delightful and I find myself grinning. They stop; and activate two small noise-making robots. They seem to change pitch according to proximity and touch, but not in any sort of consistent way. The performers try to develop a sort of game out of this, but it doesn’t really go anywhere. Things are left to gently collapse. They finish with a blackout, Spowage illuminating Pappa with a bare light bulb. She comes into our sight, and poses; he whips his hand away to plunge her into darkness.

There’s a pleasurable relaxedness towards their differences across all this: differences of gender expression, in the ways they move, in how they relate to both the stage and their audience. These games are a way for the collaborators to test one another, to offer new ways of perceiving this pair. But the games themselves are rarely tested, and are let fade away at the first chance. I notice my curiosity towards what might happen if they stuck to some things; to test or complexify these choreographic structures; to see what they might make possible or impossible. To create a problem, to get stuck; to be forced to find solutions, to find new strategies to persist or escape.”

Full review here:

Photo by Ioannis Athanasiou

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