Our current Foot in the Door students visit DanceXchange’s The Patrick Centre for the first time to review Humanhood / ZERO on Thursday 18 November, 8pm.

Ben T

The mesmerizing dance performance “ZERO” created by “HUMANHOOD” was a show full of intrigue. Mixing incredible lighting effects and enveloping sound with hypnotizing dance moves that when combined captured my complete and utter attention drawing me deeper and deeper into the small yet mysterious world their dance created.

Probably the best thing throughout the entire performance were the two dancers who carried the entire performance. Their every movement meant something. Though neither of the two uttered a single word their body language spoke absolute volumes and their synchronized dance moves accompanied by their meaningful responses to one another created a powerful chemistry between the two.

The choreography, simply put, was a masterpiece carrying a spiritual feeling with it that had me completely hypnotized. Their dance steps would be slow and relaxing but would swiftly shift to fast and intense perfectly demonstrating the emotion of the characters. The beautiful choreography tells a story that is completely left open to an interpretation allowing each individual within the audience to enjoy a unique experience and take a different story away from the performance.

One of my favourite elements of the show was the simplicity of it and what they were able to accomplish with that simplicity. The small stage, the simple lighting, and the fact that only two dancers performed in the entire show. All were used to their fullest to create a captivating show.

Anyone who loves dance and stories that are open to demonstration should not hesitate to view this great performance.

Katie-Marie L

For something that you can’t see, dark matter holds a great deal of power. Humanhood’s two-man performance explores the complexity of reality through clever movement and immersive sound, doing just as it seems to set out to do, holding meaning not just through what you see and hear, but also what you don’t.

Rudi Cole and Julia Roberts cut the space alone, remaining in the parameter of a striking white circle that is impossible to take your eyes off. Combined with Gyda Valtysdottir, Alex Forster, Shahzad Ismaily, Xhosa Cole, Azizi Cole and Iain Armstrong’s magnifying score and soundtrack, here you witness the beginning of life itself, or the beginning of the galaxies, with a particularly moving and clever scene between the two athletic dancers. Throughout this journey, and a journey this very much is rather than separate tracks or movements, the movement of one dancer balances impacts the energy of the other, whether that be through homologous harmony or corresponding collisions.

This performance is an excellent homage to the underrated crossovers between science and creativity, disputing the idea that creativity, identity and movement are in opposition to scientific thought. Professor William Chaplin, from the University of Birmingham, School of Physics and Astronomy, indeed has hopefully sparked some thought about how a collaboration of the two could lead to new ways of thinking. What is research about galaxies, without an exploration of identity? Likewise, what is an exploration of what makes us human, without thinking about the bigger picture?

Foot in the Door is a 5-day course designed to enable young creatives aged 16-23 to grow their employability skills and gain an insight into Birmingham’s creative and cultural industry,  led by Creative Alliance, the leading training provider within the creative and cultural sector in the Midlands. Creative Alliance is working with DanceXchange and other partner organisations, with funding from Arts Connect, to help the city’s creative talent aged 16-23, to get a foot in the door of this sector.

DanceXchange’s course is focused on the different aspects of dance production, project management and technical skills, plus careers guidance. It’s currently being delivered through a mix of interactive workshops and hands-on activity led by Birmingham based Mothership Projects.