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Offensive Tanz

Dance Ambassador Mira

Powerful waves of energy

"Hold Your Horses" by De Dansers at Theater Strahl

Mira Hülsmann is 14 years old and visited the performance "Hold Your Horses" at Theater Strahl on behalf of Offensive Tanz. She wrote down her impressions for our blog.

If you want to become a Dance Ambassador:in yourself, please have a look at our call for applications.

© Oerol Bart Grietens

Hold Your Horses

Performance visit at Theater Strahl am Ostkreuz

An empty stage, slowly filling audience seats, pleasantly warm air in the face of the icy cold that covers every puddle outside with ice crystals. Quiet voices fill the large room, charged with joyful anticipation. And suddenly it starts. Without much preamble, a table is carried to the center of the illuminated stage, dancers and singers take their places, and with the force of a comet hurtling towards the earth, the piece captivates the audience from the very first second. Powerful waves of energy flood the theater, wild and breathless, but never pausing for a moment. The dancers move in unison, sometimes independently, then again synchronously, like the colorful rings of a kaleidoscope., everything is there. All things that can set our imagination and fantasy, but also our body in motion - give us aesthetic dance experiences.

And suddenly all the attention is on just one person, as if she had suddenly turned into something never seen before. The others want her, grab her hair, her arms, and hang insistently on every single one of her movements. Then the mood changes, as if the wind were shifting, and with unpredictable vehemence another person suddenly becomes the center of attention. The dancers move casually, leap barefoot across the black stage floor and perform such skillful combinations of jumps, movements and team constellations that the audience can do nothing but follow each of the daring steps with eyes wide with wonder.

© Oerol Bart Grietens

It doesn't look at all as if every movement was fixed in advance. Nothing seems stiff and trained, but simply beautiful, wildly danced, freely conveyed, soft and almost playful. But there is also this incredible precision that makes it almost impossible that every foot and every finger is not exactly where it should be. How else can such amazing choreographies be possible? The dancers seem to have this crazy trust in each other, literally throwing themselves into each other's arms without even looking, jumping in the sure belief that they will be caught by someone, even if that someone was busy with completely different things seconds before. And over all this wild, wonderful dance is... music.

The singer is also on stage, occasionally even dancing along. His voice and the tones of his guitar sides vibrate through the tension-laden air in just as rousing a way as the movements of the dancers.

The music merges with the dance. It is a part of it.

Now and then the general attention turns to the singer alone, then it is he who is clutched and held like something that would have been dangerous to let go. His raspy voice overlays dance steps and acrobatic movements, rushing through the room and occasionally assuming a tremendous volume that forces the bittersweet melody into everyone's ears. And still everything seems so casual and yet so controlled. There are moments when the energy seems to virtually overwhelm the room. As if struck by lightning, the performers then leap into the air, as if they could no longer hold on to the life pulsating within them, and everyone begins to run. The energy becomes almost tangible. Each step seems to be intended only to push off, not to set down. No arrival, only further.

© Oerol Bart Grietens

"...All that water down the drain... All that fire up in flames..." The lines of the tailored music are one with the dance, and the blood-curdling courage displayed ventures ever forward. Now one of the dancers climbs up stacked tables, continues to dance at the top as if it were nothing, and then drops as if she has acquired the conviction that she can fly. And there is always someone to catch the other. Climbing and falling. Being caught. Facing danger with serenity and thus overcoming it.

Protecting and being protected, the dancers let themselves be drawn to each other again and again, disregarding the unwillingness of the other. Violence and tenderness are combined in this acrobatic dance and an unbroken trust carries each of the movements. At some point it is no longer possible to tell who is jumping and being caught, and who is holding the other. Everything happens so fast, seems to be impossible. And yet the performers manage to realize this unique mixture of flying and dancing.

by Mira Hülsmann, Dance Ambassador

"Hold Your Horses" is a co-production of De Dansers, NL and Theater Strahl.

>> more info about the piece