Assembly @ George Street
12-31 August (ex. 17,24) 17.05

Kataklo AthleticSome shows at the Fringe ooze quality and this is one of them – in style, grace and confidence Kataklo investigate Leonadro da Vinci’s passions – machines and the human form in a piece of dance that gripped me from the outset.

The opening piece is performed by the lead male and female of the eight-strong troupe upon a leather saddle hung high above the stage. The myriad or permutations of limbs that are achieved upon the simple prop are hypnotic. The weight and proportions of the dancers is explored and exploited whilst the flying machines so beloved of da Vinci are hinted at.

The storyline eluded me somewhat but seemed to involve some form of struggle, invasion and argument before concluding in repose and elation. In some ways the challenge of extracting a narrative from the music and dance on stage only enhanced the viewing.

The set is as ingenious as the master’s designs and consists simply of six giant upright triangular wedges that are rolled around to form ramps, platforms and hideaways. The lack of technical presence on stage  – the set is moved by the dancers – aptly reflects the man-powered ethos that da Vinci designed with.

Shifting forms, each with their own personality and costume are at once fluid and strong. The sleeping scene is memorable and, along with several sections involving the whole cast that drift in and out of unison, certainly had me raving about the beauty, as much in form as function, of the body.

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