An enigmatic fusion of movement, dance and voice that builds from a steady rhythm to tumbling freneticism.
Presented by Gravity & Other Myths/Aurora (Adelaide Young Voices)
Reviewed 25 February 2021
Can you do a backbend? How about a backbend whilst at the top of a three-person high pyramid? The amazing performers from the Adelaide Festival show, The Pulse, can do that and much, much more.
For 2021, this home-grown company has joined forces with local choir, Aurora, and the result is an astounding spectacle of arts at the most professional and inspiring level. Starting slow, performers in dove grey strut the stage in mimicry of city bustle. They begin to move as one, a single human organism, while black-clad singers line the back of the stage. From this gentle buzz, a pulse begins to emerge—single performers break from the pack, showcasing their acrobatic moves. It’s not long until others fall into step, shifting that pulse to the next level.
Throughout the 70-minute production, the performers move from pure acrobatics to contemporary dance and even comedic interludes. A dancer playing a human keyboard by stepping on prone bodies to elicit sound is an awesome way to experience Mary had a Little Lamb.
The Pulse is impressive at many levels. It is visually stunning, not just through movement, but also through its incorporation of imaginative stage lighting, which casts elongated shadows and plunges all into periods of blackout. Bodies hurtling through the air as though shot from cannons, coupled with haunting vocal solos and the spectacle of 60 bodies on stage at once, all made for a unique and spellbinding experience. You’ll see human tripods, mountains, contortionists and lyrical movement, always in sync, always maintaining the consistency of a group pulse.
Having spent a lifetime watching theatre from around the globe, there’s no doubt that this company is world-class. A perfect fit for the Adelaide Festival of Arts, this show will appeal to anyone who loves dance, feats of amazing strength and acrobatics, or simply wants to see a unique and entertaining show.
Reviewed by Samantha Bond
Venue: Her Majesty’s Theatre
Season: 25 February – 3 March 2021
Duration: 70 mins
Tickets: $30 – 67
Rating out of 5: 4.5