Helix deals with delegation at its core. Kuik Swee Boon presents an unusual double bill for the company; there is a sense of right of passage to younger voices in the company, specifically Zhuo Zihao and ex-dancer Yarra Ileto opening the evening.
The first installment of dance brings the company on stage – migrating from the backs of the Theatre into the spotlight, dressed in full black costumes, we can hardly notice skin. The atmosphere is dark throughout and the dancers present their dance-selves on a moving platform.
Against choreographed by duo Zhuo Zihao and Yarra Ileto is a narrative of the ensemble’s work as people in the dance studio, voiced over from the outset we are introduced to the dancer’s personal profiles. The work becomes most interesting when the choreography presents smaller sections of dance, especially Brandon Khoo and Billy Keohavong. There is a feeling of acceptance by the entire group, translated into simple movement on stage, however, when the microphone is passed around from dancer to dancer the piece becomes more informative in its bilingual take but less captivating as these dancers are trained to move and not necessarily to speak fluently on stage. The latter needs more attention, simply because the communication through the body; i.e. choreography embedded in the voice over seems sufficient in itself.
Against is a sharing of creative minds with a focused objective in giving the dancers centre stage to share the intricacies of working in a group, the sense of direction and vision shared amongst an eclectic group of talented dancers.
Helix in Progress by Kwik Swee Boon in collaboration with the dancers is a transient choreographic statement.
Rising from the darkness, Swee Boon unravels a platform on stage through slow and calculated dance, the performance is striking due to its detail and focus on simple movement – the manipulation of this object, perhaps a metaphor where Swee Boon resolves his own dance on stage opening up a new arena to be explored by younger dancers – commissioning new ideas from his ensemble, he hides in the dark leaving the space open.
A beautiful trio arises, constantly changing Swee Boon’s initial state of mind. This particular section of the work is compelling – simply put the dancers manipulate a platform in a range of directions, departing into new dance horizons where manipulation, upside-down material as well as flying low present a new dance venture for the company, proposed by its dancers.
The distinction is at the heart of Helix in progress, highlighting the beautiful and emotional solo from Anthea Seah taking over the stage with a personal movement identify not mirrored on anyone else.
Helix, in progress finishes with the suggestion of continuity and brand new perspectives on dance; the curtain comes down while the entire company is still onstage exploring their own dance signatures. A beautiful theatrical end – letting the audience curious for more.