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Test Run, Crucible Studio, Sheffield

By Ian Soutar

Sheffield Telegraph, 5 October 2007

The distinction between contemporary dance and multi-performance and physical theatre is becoming increasingly arbitrary and Sheffield’s Vincent Dance Theatre continue to push the boundaries.

Here we get mesmerising movement, haunting sounds and constant humour.

The short piece, commissioned by Dance Umbrella for a performance in London and due to tour in a double bill next year, is ostensibly a solo dance by Janusz Orlik.

From its shambolic start when the dancer and two violinists amble on stage, shuffle, bicker and then commence their ‘test run,’ it is obvious this is much more as the musicians gradually enter the performer’s space.

At first he seems to be directing them but eventually the musicians are surely determining the movement. Or are they simply all of a piece?

Sheffield musician Matt Howden is not a natural mover (that’s the point) but finds himself part of the action.

Patryjca Kujawska has done that often before but she is also required to do a spot of comedy acting (in her second language). There’s multi-skilling for you.