32 Rue Vandenbranden is part of the London International Mime Festival and is a UK Premiere. The production was created by the Belgium company, Peeping Tom, in 2009 and has already received several awards.
You enter the Barbican curve to a jaw dropping skyline, framing two trailers. This backdrop adds a cinematic quality to the whole production. Two men arrive, laden with bags, in this desolate and isolated land with no explanation as to why? These un-answered questions continue throughout the production: who is the baby’s father? Where did the cross country skiers come from? Why is she washing the windows with vodka? But these strange moments only hook us in more to this bizarre world created by Gabriela Carrizo and Franck Chartier. The strange mix of dance and music is constantly surprising, inventive and often highly amusing. Physically all the dancers are exceptional, the movement is daring and innovative and the constant change in style keeps the audience mesmerised for the whole 90 minutes of the production. This surreal piece feels in some ways akin to a version of David Lynch’s Twin Peaks – but for the dance world. The piece manages to carry a lot of weight and a great sense of fun, neither element compromising the other. Something this bizarre could make an audience feel disconnected but the talent of the performers keeps you captivated throughout. 4/5
Review written by Lucy Bishop.
32 Rue Vandenbranden is currently showing as part of this year’s London International Mime Festival at the Barbican Theatre. For more information on the production, visit here…