Fused – Bath Spa University Theatre

Show Report – Fused – Bath Spa University Theatre 25/02/2010

Tonight, I thought I would try something a little bit different and see a dance performance. I haven’t actually watched any dance for a long time but my memories of dancing when I was a child are always happy ones and the little African dance I have done always fill me with high spirits and exhilaration. This performance however, I found very depressing.

Don’t get me wrong, the Dance students from the university all have fantastic talent but I felt like I was in a mental health institute watching a bad self help video as the dance covered issues like depression, eating disorder, sleep disorder, out casting and impatience. I’m not being disrespectful to anybody who enjoyed the performance but I found that it just wasn’t my “cup of tea”. I prefer dance to be for enjoyment, to be either of beauty or energy and celebration; to music, not abstract sounds. The abstract sounds I found very effective in some story telling but without a constant rhythm I think it takes a very talented group of dancers to keep in time with each other.

The venue itself doesn’t leave much to be desired and I tend to find it very uncomfortable. The building was not built with any toilets or a bar area which I personally consider necessities of a theatre. The technology in the theatre itself are very impressive with a large projection screen and many lights but much of the controlling of these were to be desired as the audience waited an uncomfortably long time in the dark between videos and were confused that every time the set changed the house lights were turned on. People without programmes almost got up and walked out as they thought it was the interval.

I did think, however, that the use of another performance in the foyer in the interval was excellent. In fact, this was the performance I enjoyed most of the whole night as it was comical and subtle and completely captivated the audience.

Overall, I wouldn’t pay to see this type of contemporary dance again but perhaps in a venue more comfortable it would have been more tolerable.


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