Friday, 21 August 2009


19/8/09, C Chambers Street (Edinburgh Fringe)

Only in Edinburgh (again). It's approaching midnight and you're on the top floor of a building in the Old Town, on a sweltering night (so hot that A felt ill) though mercifully there's a fan in the room to cool it down a little, watching eight dancers, naked but for G-strings and white body paint, pretending to be creatures emerging from cocoons. I think.

Four men, four women (though D thought one of the women started out as a man), three of the men and one of the women shaven-headed, the others with indecent amounts of hair (though only on their heads). They come from Oz and call themselves Zen Zen Zo. The music was new-agey, the movement controlled, often Butoh influenced: when the creatures woke up they turned into dancers, making Japanese-mask faces at us.

It was late, it was the fifth thing we'd seen that day and my memory is hazy. But there was a sequence where they ate raw eggs... then threw some at the audience. Another in which they donned shades and chunky red necklaces and pretended to be shrieking, airheaded women. One in which the men danced in Japanese costumes, arms and legs spread wide (A liked that the most). One involving simulated sex (A liked that the least). One in which they came forward in waves before collapsing and rolling to the back of the stage as the others stepped over them (S said that reminded her of Belsen).


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