Feathers review: Dancing in a vast Beckettian anywhere | Tiger Dublin Fringe

A great collaboration between composer Mel Mercier and choreographer John Scott


Project Cube, Dublin


Composer Mel Mercier is our companion as four remarkable international dancers journey across the bleakness of a vast Beckettian anywhere, through oases of peace, playfulness and beyond. Feathers, a new collaboration with choreographer John Scott, is vintage work from the dancemaker: physical, exhilarating, humorous and deadly serious, as it draws on Homer and Emily Dickinson. The soundscape is intricately woven into the dance, with Mercier's layering of human voices punctuating the rhythm. We see the dancers' bodies eloquently run, stretch and fold, their voices sweet and clear as birds' or strangled and broken, echoing a desolate or melodic soaring of the score. To break the boredom of their epic voyage, Sarah Ryan and Roderick George play a time-filling game of naming boats, while Kevin Coquelard and Omagbitse Omagbeni concentrate on an imaginary complex movement.The dancers align for a forced march, with bare hands slapping the soles of their feet, setting the pace, to be followed by directionless straggling, before an anguished solo run is counterpointed with collective embracing. Mercier's score breathes the wind into the lungs as they journey forward, gulping the air of hope.