Reviews/Dance/Fringe World Festival/Theatre

A fishbowl of memories

6 February 2020

Isabelle Leclezio finds the uninhibited joy of fish feet refreshing to see in the local indie dance scene.

Review: Jess and Joss, fish feet ·
The Blue Room Theatre, 4 February 2020 ·
Review by Isabelle Leclezio ·

It’s back to school we go! Presented by The Blue Room Theatre Summer Nights program, emerging artists Jessie Camilleri-Seeber and Jocelyn Eddie’s latest dance theatre romp, fish feet, takes you on a hilarious tumble through time with tongue-in-cheek tales from the primary school playground.

The work has been in development since STRUT Dance’s 2019 Shortcuts program and the Blue Room’s Winter Nights season, and as a keen follower of this dynamic duo’s uniquely evolving style, I was very excited to see the next chapter in their creation.

In pigtails and brightly coloured polos, four Perth-based contemporary dancers bring to life a collage of personal anecdotes told with the unreserved honesty of a bunch of Year 3 kids.

The simplicity of the movements allows space for cleverly arranged rhythmical narratives that are wonderfully original yet reminiscent of childhood clapping games. I was particularly enamoured with the witty humour and adorable vulnerability in Kimberley Parkin’s awkward show-and-tell day retelling.

Every Aussie millennial will giggle at things they didn’t even realise they could remember so vividly – like the yes-no-maybe eraser, the one and only, ultimate decision-making tool. Or the battle of the lunchtime snack-trade, as recounted with amusing seriousness by Brent Rollins and Macon Riley.

Bursts of vibrant stories bubble in and out of a fishbowl of memories, the dancers slipping into distant watery recollections as the soundscape ripples and drips around them. At times it felt like the clarity and momentum of the story arc were lost a little here; nonetheless I was enchanted by the sensitivity of these moments.

A delightful surprise was Emily Coles’ comic burlesque rendition of her pet cat’s unfortunate end. A cheeky episodic break from the established classroom scene, it smoothly bridged the gap between the youthfulness and maturity of the talented dancers.

These recent WAAPA graduates radiate an authentic, uninhibited joy that is so refreshing to see in the local independent dance scene. Jess and Joss are not afraid to let the unabashed creativity of their inner-children leave paint splattered all over the walls, and our summer nights are all the more colourful for it.

fish feet is on at the Blue Room until 8 February 2020.

Pictured top, from left: Emily Coles, Kimberley Parkin, Brent Rollins and Macon Riley go back to school in fish feet. Photo: Hannah Laurent.

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Author —
Isabelle Leclezio

Isabelle Leclezio is currently very excited to be moovin’ and groovin’ again after a year away from the world of dance. This year she is back at WAAPA to complete her Honours degree, during which she hopes to learn more about the power of dance in marginalised communities. Her favourite pick-me-up activity is soaring on the swings in the park at night, watching the streetlights woooosh past.

Past Articles

  • One man makes sense of the world

    Isabelle Leclezio is fascinated by the creative output of the late Ross Seaton, known as ‘the Walking Man’, a reclusive but prolific artist who worked to make sense of the world.

  • Acts of bravery

    Between gasps at the performers’ feats, Isabelle Leclezio finds herself deeply moved by Leviathan’s message.

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