Dance Australia

Perth Festival

THREE vastly different works made up the international dance component of Wendy Martin’s final program as director of Perth Festival. Martin’s championing of inclusivity and her experience in locating current dance gems has been a gift to Perth audiences. A visceral, relevant and powerful program, each work saw much post-show conversation in its challenging of paradigms.

The Nature of Why, presented by The British Paraorchestra ( February 21), is a generous and open-ended work that led the Perth audience literally onto the main stage of the State Theatre Centre to experience close hand the interplay between dancers and musicians. Invitational from the outset, the co-directors urged us to enjoy an individual experience and to expect to miss things along the way. “Stay with us,” they prompted, as we mingled with performers in an immediate breaking down of barriers.

The work features a quartet of dancers weaving through the space in a simple choreography of attract and repel, push and pull motions, reflecting the “why” asked by physicist Richard Feynman about magnetic force. YouTube sound grabs of Feynman musing on relativity punctuate an expansive score by Will

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