Ladylike, VAULT Festival

by guest critic Lara Alier

2018, the year of the woman – in some parts of the world. I could probably count them on one hand.

So, when I see four diverse performers on stage, I hope it will broaden my horizons. Brazilian choreographer and performer Ella Mesma uses a wide range of dance styles such as rumba, rock and South American ritual dances. All of them are accompanied by a rich combination of musical styles and traditional instruments, crossing African beats with Son Cubano.

A ring of wheat is created to define the space that the women enter into, presenting an archetype of the female mask. The performers intertwine animalistic characters and tasks such as cleaning or cooking; it’s poetic way to make the audience understand different ways we can entrap ourselves. The whole show follows a very clear structure that is emphasized by the use of symbolic props.

The ring is swept away, and with graffiti another circle appears, a space to redefine our identity. There are different approaches, opinions and moves, and yet in this physical piece one word resonates radiates one word – embrace.

Ladylike runs through 15 March.

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