Thursday, May 09, 2013


Not the 'kama' one but something very different.  Last night we went with our friends to Birmingham Hippodrome to see the dance troupe Sutra perform.  Sutra are the brainchild of Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and feature set designs by Anthony Gormley (of Angel of the North fame) and seventeen ShaoLin buddhist monks.

At its most basic level you could say the performance was a bunch of men pushing wooden crates around a stage to some rather discordant modern music.  In reality it was so much more than that.  The boxes created patterns, objects, even stories (men jumping from a cliff into a boat; a lotus flower opening) whilst the monks' mixture of kung fu and tai chi was awe-inspiring - by turns graceful and explosive.  There were even some lovely touches of humour.

The performance only lasted a little over an hour but the level of physical effort involved in lugging the boxes round the stage and doing martial arts in, around and over them was so extreme that we really couldn't have asked for more.

An unusual evening but a very rewarding one.

At a glance I can't find a website for Sutra but you can see more details at the Birmingham Hippodrome webpage here.

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