City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Nederlands Dans Theater 2 Review

By Barbara Bryan - Posted on 11 June 2008

Show Details
Sleight of Hand - choreography Paul Lightfoot and Sol Leon; music - Philip Glass Symphony nr 2 Movement 11: Dream Play - choreography Johan Inger; music Igor Stravinsky Le Sacre du Printemps: Mammatus - choreography - Medhi Walerski; music Dirk Haubrich
the company of NDT2
Running time: 

Nederlands Dans Theater 2 is one of the world's best contemporary dance companies. A hallmark of the company is their zest and vitality - all sixteen dancers in the troupe range from 17 to 23 - and their apparent care-free attitude to risk-taking with their bodies.

The programme starts with the best piece Sleight of Hand (premiered last year) - an arresting piece choreographed by Paul Lightfoot and Sol Leon.

Highlighted by the menacing tones of Philip Glass' Symphony No 2, it begins with two dancers suspended on seven feet plinths at the back of the stage. Appearing initially like statues, their black clothes flow to the floor.

Gradually other figures emerge ominously and at some point the two figures - who can only move from the waist up - start thrashing about, gesticulating wildly in their constrained state whilst the mobile dancers exude exuberant energy. Sleight of Hand is memorable because it so effectively juxtaposes the emotions of freedom and restraint.

Next on the agenda was Dream Play, where the dancers displayed some thrilling athleticism.

This was followed by a new work Mammutus - choreographed by Medhi Walerski, a resident dancer with the main company NDT1. Walerski was with NDT2 for two years and is therefore familiar with the youthful family atmosphere engendered within the company.

Mammutus starts off humorously with a figure strolling across the stage being followed by the continuous flow of a snowflake substance. It then builds up to a frenetic pace, with dancers appearing to be searching for some illusive path and finally concludes with the solo dancer again musing as he leaves the stage.

Scottish Tour:

Wednesday 11 June: Edinburgh Festival Theatre - 7.30pm

Friday June 13: Her Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen - 7.30pm

Tuesday June 17: Eden Court Theatre, Inverness - 7.30pm

Friday June 20: Theatre Royal, Glasgow - 7.30pm

Thereafter follows a world tour.