David Meade: Seeing Dance
New York City-based Chloe Kastner Dance Company make a welcome return to the Fringe with Bring Me to Light, a 50-minute piece based on the line, “If I show you the darkness I hold inside” by composer Jeanine Tesori, that explores substance abuse. toxic relationships, and mental and chronic illness. Kastner’s dives into pasts that might be regretted and preferably forgotten seem to be more connected with heartbreak, although there are suggestions of abusive relationships too.
It sounds like it could be a bit grim, but while Kastner’s 40-minute work does have plenty of darker moments, it’s ultimately dance of hope and optimism. Despite sometimes needing a bigger stage to breathe fully, the American modern dance choreography is very engaging and finds beauty even in the darkest of places. Perhaps best of all, Bring Me to Light is a dance full of fine dancing, a piece where the moving body does all the storytelling.
This was a stunningly choreographed show with incredible performers who bore their souls for the audience! Highly recommend!
Wow what a beautifully choreographed piece! From the moment the dancers stepped on the stage I got emotional and by the end I was in absolute tears, and it’s all thanks to the commitment and emotions the artists conveyed throughout their performance. Amazing job from everyone involved, thank you for putting on such a powerful piece, run don’t walk to go see this!
A truly beautiful touching piece. Each performer stunningly painted the raw emotions behind each story. I was in awe at the outstanding talent displayed on stage!
David Meade: Seeing Dance
New York-based Chloe Kastner’s Untouchables programme took a considered look at three relationships. Different times, different places, but all in their own way deeply affecting the people involved.
Most heart-wrenching of the three short pieces is the opening Dear Son. Through letters spoken by Patricia Swieteck, it tells the story of a mother and her son who goes off to fight in the Second World War. It is striking how quickly young soldiers found themselves in action, and how quickly some died. We see what would turn out to be a last goodbye, moving through a first letter home on January 11, 1942, to a final one dated April 30 the same year.
Rather than attempting to dance the words themselves, Kastner’s choreography evokes the feelings and emotions behind them. Natalie Ramos as the mother was particularly powerful in the closing scenes as expressed her anger at the death of her son (played just right by Marco Fiumara), and the railing of her at what the army had asked of him.
Without a shadow of a doubt some of the most technically proficient contemporary dancing I’ve ever seen, telling the story of several extremely sensitive subjects. Amazing acting that will make you genuinely feel the emotions of the characters coupled with wonderful choreography. A definite 5 star and recommend everyone to check out this group if they can!
A show with strong dancing, great choreography, and powerful themes. The third and longest piece was especially good. This show won't be here for much longer, so see it while you can!
what a great show - absolutely blown away with how gracefully you handed such taboo subjects and how talented you all are - definitely worth a watch if you fancy some visual dance, accompanied by spoken word!!
Saw this show tonight - wow! I'm not usually a fan of 'contemporary' dance styles, but these guys showed a really thorough knowledge of dance, and their technical ability is off the charts! Considering several members of the group participates in more than one dance, their stamina and familiarity with the choreography deserves a lot of respect. I'm sure we'll hear more from these guys in the future!