Review: Princess, Lost Theatre, Stockwell or when Stan watched a contemporary dance piece for the first time
Well this is new for me: A dance piece. And by that I mean I'm coming to this having seen a ballet once and that's it when it comes to dance as a form of storytelling. There is a synopsis for Princess in the programme and I wonder if I'd read it beforehand whether it would have made a difference because I'm not sure I gleaned much of what is described there from what I was seeing on stage.
Stuart Saint is the writer/director/choreographer of the piece which, apparently, shatters the illusion of the happily-ever-afters, banishing the storybook fairytale and finding the feminism in Disney. Maybe it's my lack of familiarity and knowledge of dance but what I got from it was a toy rabbit carrying, dungaree wearing 'princess' who is seduced by a group of more scantily-clad dancers including a man wearing a rabbit mask. At some point, she changes into a dress that is more Alice in Wonderland-style and eventually she rejects the man-rabbit.
There are some great dance sequences such as when the dancers are all tightly packed together and move sharply in time and I particularly liked one segment with a parachute-sized 'skirt'. Some of the dancers are more precise and crisper with their movements than others but overall it was impressively choreographed and performed or at least it seemed to my inexperienced eye. However, I can't say I took away from it much more than that, to me it was 65 minutes of dance routines. Maybe my lack of dance knowledge was a disadvantage.
Princess is on at the Lost Theatre until Saturday 19 November.