Last night I went to see Jasmin Vardimon's new piece '7734', performed at Sadler's Wells. The piece is 'a contemporary view of the legacy of brutality and manipulation of power'. According to the program 'perspective is everything in 7734 --- it is a world in which what you see depends on how you look at it'.
One persepective of the piece would be it was a work that combines impressive physicality, theatrical devices, and clever use of props and set.
But from where I was sitting things looked at bit different. 7734 tackles dark and potentially extremely powerful and emotive issues (genocide, disaporic memory, legacy of violence), but for me all of the power was lost due to over kill on many levels. Too many images/concepts, over acted and over danced. For the majority of the piece I didn't feel moved by the characters' suffering because I didn't believe it. I saw dancers, who although they were extremely skilled physically, were dancing the ideas, rather than embodying them.
In a way it was rather frustrating to watch 7734, so many times I saw potentially beautiful and effective concepts get destroyed by dramatics that, for me, are a turn off. I felt two of the most powerful scenes were a sensitively danced solo, performed by Yunkyung Song, that ends with her silently standing amidst a pile of red clothing she rips from the numerous plastic bin bags she had been forced to carry, and the end scene in which the female dancers, dressed in nude underwear are held aloft by Luke Burrough, playing the character of the conducter/concentration camp guard, and then thrown on to a huge pile of clothes, as though on to a rubbish dump. Both of these were the quietest scenes both in terms of movement, sound and acting.
From my perspective less really is more.