devised by Riotous Company.
Park Theatre (Park 90) Clifton Terrace Finsbury Park N4 3JP To 2 November.
Sat 7.45pm Mat Sat, Sun 3.15pm.
TICKETS: 0207 870 6876.
then Number 1 First Street Manchester 6, 7 November 2014.
TICKETS: 0161 200 1500.
Runs 50 min No interval.
Review: William Russell 30 October.
Sleepless in Finsbury – and at Home in Manchester.
Two young women, one blonde, one brunette, and a male pianist, all wearing anoraks – and braided belts round the women’s waists – and a couple of stools, are all that is needed to create magic.
The man enters swathed in a hooded anorak. Menacing? Actually he is the pianist. The women, similarly engulfed in anoraks, start to dance – strange, snail-like beings writhing and slowly shedding their anorak skins, which end up as one skin by some miracle of disrobing.
What it all means is anybody’s guess. They dance, they entwine, at times it is slightly Sapphic, at others erotic in a less specialised sense. They become joined by the woven cord belts which have been unravelled to form a possibly umbilical connection.
One of the two stilt-walks on the stools, which turn into prison cages. The pianist plays tinkling tunes, raps on the frame of the piano, thunderous crescendos, and utters what sounds like gibberish.
The women howl like beasts, smile beatifically, seem to be in love with the audience, with one another. It is dance theatre at its most beguiling and it lasts exactly the right length of time.
They could be, as the title suggests, fighting off sleep, suffering from sleeplessness or simply having the audience on. It does not matter. The result is pure pleasure.
The Girls: Irene Cioni, Mia Theil.
The Pianist and Composer: Nilola Kodjabashia.
Director: Tage Larsen.
Designer: Luis Carvalho.