Resolution 2019: NYK Dance Company/Christina Dionysopoulou/Amy Ollett

Jan NYK Dance Company - Dreamers. Photo by James Whiteley

Gramophone crackles, or is it the fireplace where the shadow of one dancer mimics another? Still, for the eponymous DreamersNamYoon Kim and Wai Shan Vivian Luk, the uneasy music and restless moves, the other “she” is not like “me”. One we see, while the other is a shadowgraph on a gauze. The dream is not the reality, and the dreamer is distorted in the dream. A male dancer – Ryan Charles Ledger appears, but even a Chopin nocturne cannot unravel the dream. The pas de deux has an uneasy animation: dawn has not yet come. The dreamscape of choreographer NamYoon Kim is neither a nightmare, nor quite sweet dreams.

Four figures crouch in the darkness, and then a controlled explosion of frenzied dance, a haka reforms into a tightly coordinated concatenation of constrained tension; convulsive, percussive. Christina Dionysopoulou’s compelling Catch 28has a raw animalistic feel. It hints at street dance within contemporary dance, but there’s more than that: there is a seething anxiety of something internalised trying to get out. The performers move as one. Zack Hemsey’s adaptation of the music of Enzio Bosso with its ostinato score underpins the edginess of the dance. Sellors’flagellatory solo is striking in all senses and highlights the work of the ensemble in all its aerobic robustness.

The visual impact of Milk is immediate, a bolt of white silk flows down and spills across the stage. Integrating textile design into music and dance, choreographer Amy Ollett makes a bold and poetic statement. Fabric and dancer are one creature, creating a talking tissue, bringing a Michelangelo-esque depiction of drapery to life. Henry Jackson Newcomb’s score expands the concept, pouring in musical milk. On this canvas, three veiled dancers  paint an elegant image, yet one that tells of a struggle with innermost feelings. With a viscous fluidity, the fabric conceals, the fabric reveals. Brian J Morrison’s design is stark white and bold red; the lighting snaps between the same colours to wash out the milk … or the blood.

Reviewed on 24th of January at The Place for Resolution Review by Mark Aspen