London Premiere: BEAT at The Place

woman stands astride, arms outstretched and mouth open. Her mouth looks black and no teeth are visible.

Magherita Elliot in Igor and Moreno’s BEAT at The Place, image (c) Alicia Clarke

 

The contemporary and psychedelic dance performance BEAT is at the time of writing the newest work by Igor x Moreno and celebrated its London premiere on 1st November 2019 at The Place.

Solo dancer Margherita Elliott immediately captures the audience in a world-class performance that is mainly contemporary dance. She also shows outstanding talent in a blend of different styles ranging from traditional contemporary, to hip-hop, latin dance, shuffling, cheerleading and ballet movements. The dance in BEAT is used in a convincing way to represent everyday movements that express the different aspects and endless opportunities one has these days.

Appearance

Without really changing clothes throughout the show, the costume is designed in such a way that it represents which ever situation is needed. She turns her jacket inside out to be dressed in different colours, she pulls her shirt out of her trousers to turn it into a dress and she puts the hood on her head to appear as a nun.

Her teeth are black and appear as if they have been taken from the set of a zombie movie. It is the only aspect of her appearance that does not represent the everyday life.

Engaging with the audience

Apart from her stunning abilities to blend different dance styles, solo dancer Margherita Elliot also proves how skilled she is as an actor. She captures the audience and keeps the viewers engaged throughout the show. She uses eye-contact, facilitated by the proximity of the stage at The Place, and the full range of expressions the human face can do to keep their attention. She lures them in to consequently mock the viewer as she refuses to do what they would expect. One example is that moment when she pulls her dress out of the trousers, lifts her shirt to give the impression that she is about to undress, to then let it fall covering almost her whole body.

Light and music

The stage is set up like an art gallery. Several canvases allow for the light show to be even more impressive than it already is. It starts in a very bright space, changes to disco-like lighting and gets more exciting towards the end of the show with different colours causing psychedelic effects. The lighting designer Seth Rook Williams perfectly combines the light on stage with the movements of the dancer. This results in a beautiful play of light as she circles her arms in the air.

The music is of the electronic genre performed by DJane Martha Pazienti Caidan. The beats keep the audience engaged and at times intensify the psychedelic experience maintained by the light show.

BEAT cast and creatives

Directed by: Igor Urzelai and Moreno Solinas

Performed by: Margherita Elliot

DJ: Martha Pazienti Caidan

Set and Costume: KASPERSOPHIE

Lighting Designer: Seth Rook Williams

Dramaturg: Simon Ellis

Outside Ear: Alberto Ruiz Soler

Production Manager: Fergus Waldron

Producer: Sarah Maguire