mardi 15 septembre 2009

Next week

Come and see us back at CPT by popular demand. 21:13 is on tuesday-sunday at 8:00pm. Last time we sold out the CPT so maybe book early to avoid disappointment. Full (UK) tour dates are:

22nd-27th September: Camden People's Theatre, London
30th September-11th October: Tobacco Factory, Bristol
14th-16th October: South Hill Park, Canterbury
19th-21st October: Artsreach Dorset
22nd-24th October: Madcap Performing Arts Centre, Milton Keynes

Getting ready to go on tour...

We're re-re-rehearsing 21:13 in preparation for packing it all up and going on our first tour...

mercredi 2 septembre 2009


Great news from the fringe is that 6.0: How Heap and Pebble took on the World and Won was

Nominated and Shortlisted for the Total Theatre Award for an Emerging Company


Won the Arches Brick Award.

As part of the latter the prize is a thousand pounds and a run at the prestigious Arches Theatre in Glasgow. Better than that, the trophy is an actual brick.

Valentina collected the prize (while Thomas and Panda were busy not winning Total Theatre) at the assembly rooms at a big ceremony, where Joyce Macmillan made the big Dancing-Brick-win-the-Brick joke. It brought the house down.

Both of those things have put a lovely gloss on a great festival for us. Can't wait to do the show again.

Guardian review

We had a review from Lyn Gardner today. It was really positive and encouraging - plus just good to be in a Big Paper - but can't help feeling frustrated at being a 'lovely little show'. When will we be an epic, generation-defining, spectacular?

5 Star Fringe Review Review

The world is warming up. Two ice dancers are forced to perform on a wooden floor: They are Heap and Pebble. Eccentric and endearing, they have a beautiful on stage chemistry that makes them totally watchable. This also easily allows them to perform some scenes in silence for minutes on end. They manage a light, quirky tone with an underlying dread at the reality of their situation.
The two actors and writers Thomas Eccleshare (Heap) and Valentina Ceschi (Pebble) are lovely. Handsome Heap does all the talking and the shy and beautiful Pebble the smiling. They present themselves to the audience in surreal bursts of enthusiasm and quiet grace; the timing of their delivery and the way they have structured the oddly connecting scenes: Silent, observational ones and scenes when they address the audience are held together by their lovable demeanour. The audience are drawn into the character's plight because the threat is ours as well - and we aren't passive observers - the fourth wall is broken several times and audience members invited on stage.
This is certainly a devised production and very much to its credit. It is an excellent example of unconventionally structured storytelling. It wouldn't work on paper, not only because there is so little dialogue but because it is about physical mood and style that couldn't be conveyed in a text. It doesn't rely on any theatrical conventions, in fact it throws them out and starts afresh. It even makes text based theatre look archaic and dull in comparison.
Its structure is based on the juxtaposition of a mega and a micro-theme: Global Warming and the desperate need of two people. it starts off with the audience laughing at two clownish characters, and if this had continued it would have stayed as rather odd, physical slapstick theatre, and we wouldn't have taken the message (of global warming) seriously. What raises it above other shows of its nature is its clarity in defining a threat so abstractedly.
Increasing throughout, the threatening sense of a melting world is conveyed through poignant mime scenes and wonderful sound effects. One, for example, is an image of plastic chairs sinking to the bottom of the sea performed with the actor's backs turned to us which alludes to their, and our, drowning and therefore our extinction because of rising sea levels. Radio addresses of them on the ice are merged with news of the melting ice. They desperately try to be positive about their plight but the reality is ever present.
This gets five stars because of its innovation in style, it strikes just the right note between humour and pathos. This is a highly original and offbeat way to warn us, through art, of the reality of global warming. It hails to the power of theatre as a message carrier, and deserves all the praise it gets.

Congratulations Matt

Congratulations to Matt Trueman, who won the Allen Wright Award for a young critic, with his review of 6.0. It's not often you inspire a review this well-written; we were really touched when we first read it, and are now trying to steal some reflected glory... Here it is:

With summers hotting up and polar ice-caps melting down, Dancing Brick ask us to spare a thought for the world’s figure skaters in this surprisingly poignant and cerebral clown show. It’s been five years since Heap Cruziack and Pebble Adverati last laced up their skates and danced competitively, but now, in spite of the extinction of ice-rinks, the world champions are intent on a glorious comeback. Thus, dressed in glacial-grey chiffon, they take to the wooden floor and skate with polished smiles and clumsy feet. It’s a stunningly simple idea that captures the clown’s essential conflict of optimism and futility.

Admittedly, Thomas Eccleshare and Valentina Ceschi fail to wring this premise for every last drop of comic potential, but in return they forge an unexpected tragedy out of the iceless-dancers. On the surface, Heap and Pebble are shrewdly observed caricatures of sporting professionals. Eccleshare, in particular, revels in the absurd inanities of media-speak and the faux-humility of their podium routine is spot on. However, by the time they come to actually perform their faltering free dance, Heap and Pebble seem utterly hopeless. They are broken and empty, entirely stripped of purpose like two masterful marionettes come unstrung.

In order to achieve this, Eccleshare and Ceschi sacrifice a rounded, satisfying structure in favour of something more stuttering. They sag as often as they hit hilarity – their icy recreation of the Apollo moon landings being a particular comic peak – but there are also moments of delicate beauty. All it takes to suggest Heap and Pebble’s former glories, for example, is two fingers gliding around the miniature ice-rink of a plastic garden chair.

Though 6.0... is not the most immediately gratifying theatrical experience, it has the intelligence, depth and imagery to linger with you through the Fringe. In fact, the more you think about Heap and Pebble’s plight, the more they’ll melt your heart.