We started with wanting to change the world with a performance. We felt like idiots. Then we danced a lot. We jumped. We called on the folk traditions of Sardinia and the Basque Country. We sang. We jumped some more. We committed. Now we promise to stick together. We promise to persevere. We promise to do our best. - See more at: http://www.theplace.org.uk/igor-and-moreno#sthash.6zyFZAjk.dpuf
We started with wanting to change the world with a performance. We felt like idiots. Then we danced a lot. We jumped. We called on the folk traditions of Sardinia and the Basque Country. We sang. We jumped some more. We committed. Now we promise to stick together. We promise to persevere. We promise to do our best. - See more at: http://www.theplace.org.uk/igor-and-moreno#sthash.6zyFZAjk.dpufAt first glance Idiot Syncrasy is a quirky, repetitive work that amuses and delights. However underneath its charming exterior, it is clear that the emotional intensity and overwhelming repetitive nature of the work lies in Igor and Moreno's subtle details. But what is most interesting is the artists' ability to make their audience feel exactly as they want.
The staging is minimal: white floor, three huge white screens staggered at the back, bright white lighting, no wings and no props. Thus the audience's attention is already directed to the two men performing in shorts and a plain t-shirt (which Igor continually changes, much to the audience's amusement). Other than the quirky opening of the work and their performance of Sardinian and Basque folk songs, the men simply bounce, for the majority of the work. There are few moments of pause or rest. From the outset, the repetitive bouncing creates a sense of tiredness in the audience.
The quirky details within the work set it apart from current and more conventional contemporary dance performance. Igor's careful concentration of undressing himself and delicately folding and laying his clothes versus Moreno's complete lack of care and disinterest in the act, is both intricately detailed and ingeniously funny. In addition, Igor's sudden reappearance from behind one of the white screens with two plastic shot glasses and a bottle of Scotch Whisky, is ludicrously hilarious. After pouring and drinking the shots, Moreno then disappears again and returns with two enormous stacks of plastic shot glasses and two large bottles of Scotch, which they then begin to pass around the audience. These charming additions to the work highlight the duo's imagination and attention to detail.
After the Scotch has been passed around the audience, the music abruptly becomes louder and more overwhelming. The auditorium is suddenly filled with the heavy vibration of the pulsating sound. The increased speed of the duo's repetitive bouncing, coupled with the alcohol, the increase in music volume and the gradual brightening of the white lighting, has a dizzying and drunk effect on the audience. The change in tone successfully provokes overwhelming feelings of tiredness and dizziness. The men continue to bounce, before slipping into a repetitive dance phrase that shifts them through the space with ease. Despite the exhausting nature of the work, they seem to glide and twist past each other effortlessly. After the work has reached it's climatic peak, the music slows and the men embrace in an intimate moment of contact. They spin slowly, hugging one another, clutching onto one another. There is a definite feeling of unity, of needing one another, as our journey with them gradually comes to an end.
Igor and Moreno perform a rich exploration of each section of the work, they exhaust every idea without compromise. No section is left inadequately investigated and no part of the work feels superficial. It could be this perseverance to fully explore without negotiation and the inclusion of charming details is the key to their capacity to manipulate the audience's feelings and emotions. In this way Idiot Syncrasy is both delightful and ingenious.
Igor and Moreno's Idiot Syncrasy was performed at The Place Tues 30 September & Wed 1 October, 8pm.