Review: Older & Reckless #41 (MOonhORsE Dance Theatre)

Older and Reckless is a dance showcase for older dancers in Toronto

Older and Reckless #41 presented at Harbourfront’s Studio Theatre has everything you need, from laughs and love, to downright creepy and dark. The six work bill, curated by Claudia Moore, hosted by Tabby Johnson, is performed by some of the most celebrated older artists – as the company states, made more reckless as time goes by.

The performance starts with a group warm-up, bringing the community together in the space (or lack thereof to move your arms – but all is part of the fun). Next, MoW! on the Move, a beautiful and colourful community performance project by Roger Sinha opens the show. A happy and diverse cast of thirty mostly non-dancers perform a Bollywood and contemporary dance infused choreography. They warm the hearts of the whole audience with their contagious energy.

‘Road Trip’ – a tragicomic duet with Susie Burpee and Linnea Swan was one of the many highlights of the show. The Dora award-winning duet follows a dark comedy of the friendship between the two longtime collaborators, full of mockery of each other and being on stage. They continuously break the fourth wall – to seduce the stagehands, or to make sure they find their spike! The two attention seeking sisters-like characters are playful and charismatic through the whole performance. I would love to have seen the creative process for this work.

‘Stigma’ – from international dance sensation, Kitt Johnson (Denmark) presents a creature unlike any I have seen before. In the solo work, Johnson wears an oversized black trenchcoat, which she manipulates into creating many different dark and terrifying beings and emotions. Stigma follows the loneliness and pain of the human condition, as Johnson states “focusing on that brand (burned into the flesh) which places one apart from others”. The rumbling, wet soundscape keeps you on edge with your eyes on Johnson, as it made me feel as she could sprint straight off stage into the audience at any moment. Johnson’s incredible body control and unique manipulation of costuming attest to her massive worldwide success.

Other performances not mentioned but also wonderful in there own ways include male quartet ‘étude pour quatuor/study for quarte’ by Marie-Josée Chartier, a premier solo ‘erasing margin’ by Pia Bouman, and a contemporary Kathak solo by Deepti Gupta.

Older and Reckless provides more opportunities for older dance artists and a chance for audiences to see some of Canada’s top choreographers. This performance was one of my favourite of the year. I highly recommend seeing this performance or any future of the Older and Reckless series.

Details:

  • Older and Reckless #41 is playing at Harbourfront Centre Theatre (231 Queens Quay West Toronto ON).
  • The show runs till November 10th at 2:00 pm and 8:00 pm.
  • Tickets are $30 ($25 CADA and Seniors, $15 Culture Break for Students under 25).
  • Tickets are available online or through phone (416) 973-4000. 

    Photo of Susie Burpee and Linnea Swan, provided by MOonhORse Dance Theatre .

 

One thought on “Review: Older & Reckless #41 (MOonhORsE Dance Theatre)”

  1. Deanne- thanks for your wonderful review of Older & Reckless. Please make this one correction- Deepti Gupta was not able to perform due to injury, so you saw the lovely Aaloka Mehndiratta on the programme. So glad you were able to experience these terrific artists and dance enthusiasts! Claudia Moore Artistic Director MOonhORsE Dance Theatre, Curator Older & Reckless

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