Masculinity, and how it’s defined shifts throughout time periods, we ourselves currently assessing what this looks like and means, and with this, fostering fascinating contemplations. Forming part of this year’s Flamenco Festival London, Compagñia Jésus Carmona take on this contemplation, this taking on the form of multi-genre dance work – The Jump.
An intertwining between Jésus Carmona punctuating the production with assertive solo sequences, and the company – Rubén Puertas, Borja Cortés, Joan Fenollar, Daniel Arencibia, José Viñas and Juan Bravo exhibiting an unrivalled solidarity, The Jump forever shifts and sways into a complex realm whereby bravado and the psyche meet and debate. Scenarios are aesthetically bold, the production making a point of visually breaking up segments, making scenes that much more profound. From Arabian influences in the mesmeric whirling of the troupe at the beginning, to your more traditional flamenco features – stunning hand and arm placements an extension of one’s thoughts, frantic foot work that evokes passion and sharp spins that are heightened by sudden bursts of sweat, to the slickness of tap dance, we’re made accustomed to the cast’s rigor and prowess.
What masculinity means is a constant question throughout, from the strength yet gracefulness of whirling dirvishes, to the professionalism and competitiveness of the suited and booted business world, to the grit and resilience of working in the hospitality industry, to the toughness and patriotism of operating within the military to the machismo of watching a football game, we’re presented with a much needed nuance, masculinity individual to one’s character. The cast at one point watching a pre-recorded, speeded up version of the very show they currently take part in, they themselves analysing, just like we the audience are, where we’re currently at when discussing gender, this a fun attribute to observe and fascinating to take in at such speed.
The Jump is also heightened by José Valencia‘s hypnotic tones, his melodic drones adding a vitality and spirit, Juan Requena on the guitar and Manu Masaedo on percussion further adding to the show’s melodic heart – constant conversations between the dancers and the musical accompaniment taking place and crafting beautiful choreographic moments – a spirited, soulful evening brimming with ideas!
Review written by Lucy Basaba.
The Jump was shown from Tuesday 28th until Wednesday 29th June 2022 at Sadler’s Wells as part of this year’s Flamenco Festival. To find out more about the production, visit here…
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