Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Eye-Popping Dance Magic

Being free of responsibilities and commitments can definitely give some people the heebies-jeebies but not to me. i seem to be having that time of life when i can just do what i want and at my own sweet pace.That time of life when you can really choose without making time out and grab a bite of all the things you missed in your earlier phase. When home and then job left you with neither the inclination nor the patience to even miss those that you missed.So even when i was in this art and culture hub called Chennai where an entire season is dedicated to satisfying rasikas (art and cullture enthusiasts) i was helpless.i would read in the newspapers and sigh but had faith that my time would come.And that time has indeed arrived.
So for starters i got myself a season pass to the Metro Plus Theatre Festival and indulge into adaptations, re-imagining, monologues, duologues and even something called non-verbal presentations.An eccelectic mix, of which, three are from abroad should keep me teased and very engaged for those promising seven days.
Actually after having covered three i cannot deny that i am glad i did not have to make any forced adjustments
at least this time for such an event, which not only brings smiles and arrests the eye but also engages the mind even after the show is over.

So coming back to what tickled me was this opening show from abroad called 'Break -Out'.The brochures announced that it was an "Extreme Dance Comedy"from Sevensense and Yegam Theatre Company Korea.My reading the pamphlet about the show educated me about the theatre group Yegam and if i do get a chance i have promised myself that i should not miss it's Broadway and West End hit 'Jump'.This not because the pamphlet said so but because i was much impressed and awed with Break-out.And 'Jump' is a bigger hit as the international reviews say. Not that i blindly follow the reviews but i kept thinking if 'Break-Out' kept me  wowing at the dance, music and drama what would a martial arts performance which is what 'Jump' is evoke in me.

Break-out was indeed extreme in it's portrayal through break dance of a non- verbal presentation of five prisoners who inspired by a mysterious text break out of jail and enjoy a brief moment of freedom.
As one who was witnessing a dance drama i was just too captivated by 'fighting gravity' being depicted with a well established choreography.Getting carried away by the applause and hoots this cocktail of dance, acrobatics, gymnastics, drama, humour and puppetry arrested me to such an extent that i was only concentrating on my senses which were mostly visual and audio and not taxing my brain because the storyline was clear.What more can you expect from a late starter like me.

That Break Out was symbolic in it's portrayal only dawned upon me when i read the director's cut in which Mr Sang Hoon Lim explains that the message that this profound display of teamwork, flexibility and timing had. Which i guess could be nothing less than the mantra for survival.For each one of us want to break out of some jail of our own.
In his own words,'' B-boying, or street dance and hip- hop music, represents most powerfully the dreams and ideals of young people, expressing the common thirst for freedom and liberty.
Break Out... shows a way of escaping from the routine- bound grind.It visualises the challenges in longing for a new world and trying to find it."
So while i followed just the story and admired everything about the dance drama right from the performers to the grey hooded sweat-suits, the excellent spotlighting which was also an interesting part of this dance drama and the way the play so seamlessly shifted from the stage to the audience, it was much later that i realised that just like any other purposeful story this was having a message too.The message of hope, peace, transformation and rebellion in the face of oppression.

 i was hoping after this that i had someone who was knee deep into theatres to give me that intellectual enlightenment of the nuances in a manner that can prevent me from late reactions.
But that in no way dampens my spirit for more because this one i enjoyed in my own unbiased way. Or perhaps it is just that i have tremendous respect for all that training, hard work , innovative style, creativity that goes into bringing forth a delivery which has an uncanny timing. Where not a single move or gesture comes late.
And while the clever use of props and judiciously constructed sets especially at the scene where puppets are used to portray the actual breakout through the underground tunnel overwhelmed me, i was touched by the joy and enthusiasm of the performers who acted out the most seemingly difficult part with much joy and ease.

Now i am no connoisseur of art who can judge what makes a good theatre performance.All i know is that i felt the 75 minutes to go past me like it was much less and i came out refreshed, smiling and happy dying to tell my husband what he had missed. He was eagerly waiting in the car back from his office wanting to know if i had a good time.
My beaming smile and happy shake of the head gave it out all-a non verbal presentation which proclaimed,''Swell ! i had a blast!."

Image courtesy:http://www.thehindu.com/arts/theatre/article560951.ece


  1. good post... nice video . good depiction.

  2. good depiction. these play will pull u in .remember yr one act plays think.

  3. @Yajnaseni thank you sweetie.Gosh i missed you so much in this.Anyways i am sure we will catch up with some more in the near future...together...so make plans.:)

  4. @Gauri My acting in one act plays fades in comparison to what i am seeing.Yeah but you sensed it right.i did wonder though if i had pursued that with honesty...how far would i have gone.In any case not in a hair's distance to what i am indulging into.
    Thanks for taking time out for my post. :)