The Dance of the Magnetic Ballerina
Mesmerising choreography in this darkly erotic routine from Andrea Miltnerova
Andrea Miltnerova's deconstruction of the limitations imposed on dance seems timely, arriving as part of manipulate just as cinema has become obsessed with scrutinising machines imbued with female consciousness (Her, Under The Skin, Ex-Machina) and female pop stars are presenting themselves similarly (Lady Gaga, Victoria Modesta).
In a confined space akin to a stripper's podium, solo dancer Miltnerova's arms flutter like little doves, making circular and geometric motions to an industrial soundscape. Clad in a black leotard and white tutu, her bottom half remains completely motionless and her face expressionless.
Suddenly, the music shifts to Latin rhythms and she becomes sensual, swivelling her hips as though humanised. Gestures are looser, Miltnerova's features soften. The robot is made flesh.
Her Magnetic Ballerina is open to interpretation: she could be Coppélia coming of age, escaping the shackles of her girlhood. As funkier music pounds, the tutu becomes wings, suggesting flight or escape: then it envelops her, until only the white tutu itself remains.
With mesmerising choreography gorgeously lit in red and green by Jan Komarek, who also created the sound, this is a completely integrated, darkly erotic routine which transforms not only the room, but the collective posture of the audience.
Reviewed at manipulate Visual Theatre Festival 2015. Run ended, on tour internationally.