Intrepid Reader Returns

panta rei dans lullaby

Video - Panta Rei Danseteater 'Lullaby'

Norwegian dance company Panta Rei Danseteater, late last year, conducted a little experiment whereby three dance makers created two pieces with the same name based on the same idea, featuring three male dancers and two musicians, to see what the outcome was.

June 2nd, 2016

watch now

by Michele Lefevre

Many moons ago there was an individual who had the courage, fortitude and, some would say, downright cheek to question us on our motives. We dubbed this person our “intrepid reader” to protect their identity and to give this individual time in solitude while the wounds healed.

Evidently un-phased by the last thrashing this person returns for another 15 rounds of written beatings as a small section of our readership once again dares to question our particular take on dance but also seeks enlightenment with regard to some of the more obscure facets of the business we call show. (that is, without doubt, the worst writing in history! Ed!)

Intrepid Reader: So! Hero’s and Zeroes, that’s original, once again you are at it with the being mean to people who you don’t know, have you no respect?

We never said it was original. We don’t think we are being mean we think we are being honest and also, more importantly we feel, the section is about being funny and highlighting the more ridiculous nonsense that goes on in dance. You also forget the “Hero” part where we champion the great and the good in dance including some folks we have berated in the past! It’s almost magnanimous.

Intrepid Reader: The Dancers Bill of Rights! Are you serious?

Well let us turn that question around and ask why are you not if favour of supporting professional dancers and dance makers financially, legally and physically (in terms of health care, we don’t think you should have to carry them around or anything) in their work? You do after all benefit tremendously from that work?

Intrepid Reader: Yes I do but dancers have a choice, they can choose to go do something else right?

Indeed, but if they all decided to go do something else then just where would that leave the arts in the UK, or any where else for that matter? In life you have to provide incentives for people to do the things they do.

Dancer’s, for the most part, love what they do and that passion is being taken advantage of. For all intents and purposes the dancer’s love of what they do is being used as an incentive to keep them doing it. People who work in “real jobs” would rarely face such an issue. Also; recognise a metaphorical construct when you see one!

Intrepid Reader: There’s no arguing with you about some things is there?

No! Next question!

Intrepid Reader: Ok then, what’s with all the stuff about Wayne McGregor then, what’s he ever done to you?

Well every art form must have its figure of fun. In film it’s Michael Winner, in books it’s Julie Cooper in dance it’s Wayne McGregor. If ever there was an example of someone taking themselves and their work waaaaay too seriously then there you have it.

It’s nothing personal, we have met the man, he’s very sweet, but if you can’t take a bit of ribbing then you should get out of show business. To be honest we don’t think the guy cares one bit about what we say or do!

Intrepid Reader: You know he’s done choreography for the next Harry Potter film?

Yes we do know and should Mr McGregor’s contribution to the chronicles of the Boy Wizard cause any problems then serious retribution will be sought against said choreographer. Why they couldn’t get someone with a bit of character to do it is beyond us. Jasmin Vardimon would have been perfect, but that’s just our point of view.

Intrepid Reader: You guys seem to pick your favourites, tell me it `aint so?

It ‘aint so!

Intrepid Reader: Elaborate please!

If you insist! Yes there are people we meet that we like more than others, just like any where in any situation but we don’t play favourites. We cover a lot of what Motionhouse do because they do a lot of good work and the dancers are very different and also have a lot to say about a lot of things.

We are no big fans of Siobhan Davies but that matters not, since we have featured her work with a video feature and interview and you cannot help but respect the lady. It makes no difference what our personal views are on a particular choreographer. We are here to serve our readers and to serve dance. How noble is that?

Intrepid Reader: Isn’t it just!

We knew you would be impressed!

Intrepid Reader: In your letters page you argued that your reviewers should remain anonymous, why is that?

All of the reviewers, when they get their stuff online, are working in dance at present. Dance is a small world and some of the people working in it can hold grudges, they are human after all, well most of them in any case.

So the Editor decided that all reviewers will use pseudonyms to shield them from any potential problems that may arise whilst they are doing their day jobs. Dance makers have been known to go indiscriminately crazy about reviews while others care not one bit.

Intrepid Reader: Isn’t that just a little bit cowardly?

Nope, makes perfect sense to us, you are of course, free to disagree!

Intrepid Reader: You seem to be pushing your coverage to the limit when you start criticizing a ‘Cafe’ though!

If you are referring to Cafe Peel, that particular establishment is located within a brand new National Dance Agency so we think the prices they charge are particularly relevant to dancers, students and anybody else that uses the facility. How they choose to respond is their own affair of course and we will always publish the response. Except their last communication with us that stated ‘you are so boring!’ which is completely untrue. Here in The Lab, we’re all about the joy!

Intrepid Reader: How are you getting along with your friends at

We’re getting along great, it’s like one big happy family. Of course they are the learning impaired, slightly slow, playing with dead cats side of the family that we pretend doesn’t exist but we feel sure it’s nothing that being run over by a bus couldn’t cure them of! We like to think we are the Daily Show to their O’Reilly Factor!

Intrepid Reader: Harsh!

You bet.

Intrepid Reader: How do you expect people to take you seriously when you publish stuff about Akram Khan being like Yoda?

Well first of all being taken seriously is a little overrated as far as we are concerned. A lot of problems within dance are caused by it being taken too seriously. We offer a relaxed approach here, a bit of progressive thinking, a few laughs, some stirring insights into the dance world and bucket loads of information. As for Akram Khan being like Yoda! Come on, that’s got to be funny right?

Intrepid Reader: No!

There’s no pleasing some folks!

Intrepid Reader: Would you feature Random or Khan if they were to offer?

Yep, like we said before, even if we are not big fans other folks are so we would be more than happy to run video features on their work, not that we think that is about to happen any time soon and we can think of better ways of sending our readers to sleep! (you couldn't resist it could you? Ed!)

Intrepid Reader: Your site looks very pretty in orange, what else is new then?

Well you can leave comments on some of the sections if you wish, it’s easier to read, it’s a lot easier to find stuff with the new integrated search system, there are RSS feeds on all sections (a first for dance and the arts probably) and, just for you, we are an extra 10% funny and all of this for nothing, no money whatsoever, how about that then?

Intrepid Reader: Marvelous I’m sure!

Your first name’s not Wayne by any chance is it?

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