Dancing into the shadows at Behind the Dark

Dancing into the shadows at Behind the Dark
Mary Cody mary.cody@kilkennypeople.ie @marygcody

Struggle, chaos and abject darkness are all explored in the stunning setting of Kilfane at Behind the Dark.

The dance performance by Dublin-based company, Loosysmokes is undoubtedly one of the highlights of this year's arts festival.

An eerie atmosphere descended as the audience, under the cover of darkness, were guided down into the depths of the forest.

The strong use of lighting and an unforgettable score ensured that the performance was haunting to the core. It was however the physical performances of the dancers that was quite simply mindblowing. Their fearless agility and ability and their graceful and exact moves were close to perfection.

There is nothing spoken or said in this piece but the interdependency of the performers is explicit. The reliance of one onto and away from another was beautiful to watch.

What leaves an indellible mark was undoubtedly the final scenes when after a spectacular sequence the dancers who were as one as they swung from a bar jump one by one alone onto the forest floor.

There is food for thought in this piece and while the visual feast alone is magnificient it is the thematic undertones of the futility and struggle of our existential selves that was the most remarkable.

Long after the piece had ended the performance remains and resonates with the soul.

Behind the Dark is a production by Loosysmokes which is a company where professional circus artists teach and share aerial and acrobatic techniques with students of all levels.

They use classic and traditional techniques from circus, and their physical focus is on pushing the boundaries of each discipline. My appetite is wetted and I am waiting for more from this extraordinarily talented troupe of performers.