Human experience is a disjointed one, and words tend to be inadequate. Berlin-born Sydney-based Martin del Amo explores the notion of the unknown with both text and movement in his new work ‘Never Been This Far Away From Home.’
If ‘the void’ is intrinsically dissatisfying, rendering its physical manifestation is incapably perfected. To walk away slightly dissatisfied by del Amo’s refrained and understated dancing would be to miss that point. The subconscious of his character is never lost, and is perhaps loss itself.
Refrained by no means suggests unrefined. With gravity-defying illusion del Amo presents questioning and poignant explorations of puppet-like grace juxtaposed with jagged movements akin to a seizure.
Drawing from his own experiences of moving from Berlin to Australia, and in the absurd tradition of Ionesco with all those chairs, Never Been So Far From Home features ten corded microphones and opens with a blank-faced del Amo walking knobbly-kneed on an invisible tight rope over an illuminated square stage.
With unique ‘tell then show’ narration, del Amo speaks plainly as if a lecturer about our speculations and interpretations of silence, his childhood desire for danger, our contemporary obsession with national border patrols and the conscious residue of dreams.
Each story is followed with a physical remark set to an exciting aural backdrop. From distorted feedback to synthesised drums, Gail Priest’s intense sound-scape is eerie, disjointed, dizzying and bizarre.
Mirabelle Wouters’ smart set design is detached and cool, a geometric and logical setting to the bottomless rabbit-hole subject matter.
Clytie Smith’s stark lighting composition unveils itself with considered subtlety and sharp specificity.
When del Amo drinks his glass of water he takes his time, when he arranges his microphones he does so in no hurry, and perhaps it is arrogance to keep his audience waiting, yet each time there is a small eruption of uncomfortable giggles from the audience. What is shared is a humanity that no performance can match.
When the void is finally embraced, Del Amo’s smooth slides are joyous, cheeky and delightful.
An intuitive performer with a unique gift for storytelling, this contemporary piece offers an entertaining and enriching experience.
The Performance Space presents an Australian Premiere
Never Been This Far Away From Home
Martin del Amo
Venue: Performance Space @ Carriageworks | 245 Wilson Street, Eveleigh
Dates/Times: 7 – 17 March, Wed – Sat 8pm
Tickets: $25 Full/$20 Members/$15 Conc (Plus Booking Fee)
Bookings: moshtix.com.au, 02 9209 4614, moshtix outlets