Has Michael Flatley put you off Irish dance? Siamsoir may just make you think again with their fairytale ‘The Prophecy’.
The Leith-based Siamsoir Academy are a community-based organisation aiming to teach Irish Dance steps and performance skills and promote Irish Dance through international performances. The dancers in ‘The Prophecy’ have a wide range of backgrounds and experience, from professional to relatively new students of under a year.
It is obvious, particularly in group dance sequences, that the performers have varying levels of experience. However the show has been well cast and choreographed with a mix of solos, group pieces and duets, and each member is given their chance to shine, though professional dancer Aaron Jeffrey, Rachel Smith and Siamsoir founder Jennifer Hogan stand out as the rulers of the fairy realm.
The story is a simple fairytale of a child who is stolen away and destined to unite the Faery and Shadow clans. It is straightforward enough to render dialogue unnecessary, leaving the cast to tell the story through a fusion of Irish and contemporary dance.
The set is simple, just an arch to represent the entrance to the land of fairies and a sofa to represent the everyday world. Costumes are well-judged too: fringed flapper dresses for the scenes set in 1920s Edinburgh and floaty chiffon for fairyland. Each fairy has her own distinct colour and the Shadow clan wear black and autumnal colours. The overall visual effect is simple yet striking.
This is a fast-paced and well-judged dance piece. Siamsoir are to be admired for creating a show so rooted in their community values, and no doubt will prove a safe bet for accessible dance productions in future.
13-29 Aug 1205 (1255) @ C. More info here.