Dance review: Lauda Adrianna, Glasgow

Music and dance coalesced perfectly in Lauda Adrianna
Music and dance coalesced perfectly in Lauda Adrianna
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It’s only natural that a dance festival attached to a music festival should put live music at its heart. Not only that, but as Lauda Adrianna proved, both genres enjoy equal billing.

Lauda Adrianna - Cottiers, Glasgow

* * * *

Making its debut in 2014, the Cottier Dance Project (part of the Cottier Chamber Project) is already attracting some big names on to its stage – with this show in particular the jewel in this year’s crown.

A joint venture by San Franciscan company Stephen Pelton Dance Theatre and the highly regarded Gavin Bryars Ensemble, Lauda Adrianna was as much concert as dance show.

Comprising three musicians (including Bryars himself on double bass) and two wonderful vocalists – soprano Peyee Chen and tenor John Potter – the Ensemble drew the eye almost as readily as the dancers (the one downside to having the two artforms side by side on stage).

The work itself is set to ten of Bryars’ Laude Cortonese, re-settings of 12th century religious songs, which Pelton sought solace in after the death of his cousin in 2013.

As a result, his choreography – ably assisted by this most emotive of music – had a genuine emotional heart. Five dancers, two male, three female, came together in various dynamics – solos, duets, trios and the occasional ensemble – depicting connections forged and lost.

Like the musicians, all drew the eye, but special mention goes to Freya Jeffs (dancer and Cottier Dance Project curator) whose body is like a sculpture in motion. Each stretch or lean so perfectly executed, it was like watching pure cut marble come to life.

Seen on 21.06.15