From the spectacular visuals of space exploration to a dance re-imagining of the TV series The Office, to a disused wasteland by London City airport, the 2017 Autumn Season at the Laban Theatre has something to offer all audiences on the door-step of South East London.
Fresh from a sell-out run at Sadler’s Wells, former Choreographic Affiliate of The Royal Ballet Alexander Whitley brings 8 minutes to the Laban Theatre, which takes inspiration from the stunning images and data produced by solar research scientists from STFC RAL Space. Described as “brains as well as beauty” by the London Evening Standard, 8 minutes creates a striking and immersive environment of dance, music and film.
Making its UK debut will be Cockfight from Australian company The Farm. A cross between the TV show The Office and an Australian style cage-fight, we see two blokes going head to head in an exhilarating duet of extreme physical theatre that explores male behaviour and intergeneration conflict. We think dance is a young person’s game. What happens when someone higher up the food chain weakens and is ready to be taken down?
Also exploring different ages and generations is Staging Ages, a ground-breaking project from award-winning Scandinavian company H2 Dance. Featuring dancers aged from just 10, all the way up to 66, the show explores generation gaps, norms, taboos, dignity, expectations and prejudices. Sitting at the intersection of dance, theatre and performance, each performer draws on their own childhood memories, and what they imagine it will be like to grow older.
As part of Dance Umbrella 2017 – London’s International Dance Festival – Spanish company Cia Maduixa present DOT, a blend of dance and digital projections aimed at children that is fun for the whole family. DOT is as mind-bogglingly clever as it is charming, revolving around worlds of light, colour and imagination, revealing a choreographic playground of wonder and discovery.
Brighton-based choreographer and performer Theo Clinkard will return to the Laban Theatre with This Bright Field, after previewing the work earlier this year. Conceived in two parts, the first brings the audience on stage for an intimate encounter with the dancers within a maze of moving screens. In the second, the audience return to their seats to experience Clinkard’s choreography on a cinematic scale.
Based on a collection of stories gathered through years of working as a therapist, Trinity Laban alumnus Hagit Yakira presents a double bill of works. The evening opens with Air Hunger, an emotive and breath-taking duet, inspired by the fear and anxiety of suffocation. Completing the evening, Free Falling looks at the fear of falling, failing, and the ambition to recover.
Commissioned by the Greenwich Dance & Trinity Laban partnership, Rahel Vonmoos’ to find a place plays with the audience’s imagination using a soundscape of language and audio recordings alongside the use of video projections to explore memory and displacement. Originally premiered at the Greenwich Borough Halls in 2016, this is only the second time this work has been shown.
Also as part of the Dance Umbrella Festival is Charlotte Spencer’s Is This A Wasteland? which has been co-commisioned by the Greenwich Dance & Trinity Laban partnership. Set on a disused piece of land between an historic flour mill and London City Airport, this immersive performance invites us to re-imagine how we value our landscape, homes and communities. As day dips into night you’re given headphones and offered instructions amidst a constantly shifting soundscape. Please note – this performance is not at the Laban Theatre.
For more information on all performances, please visit our What’s On pages: trinitylaban.ac.uk/whats-on
Image: Cockfight (Kate Holmes)