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Motionhouse - Broken - Spring 2014

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Motionhouse were at the Lowry last week with Broken.  It was an intense 1hr and 15 minutes!


At the post performance talk someone asked a question about the meaning of the end of the piece and AD Kevin Finan said that it was up to each individual to take their own meaning from the show.  This is my interpretation!  It seemed to me that it was about the creation of the world through to a cataclysmic event that may (or may not) have been the end of the world.


There is a screen at the back of the stage that is used for projections but, as it is in strips, is also used for entrances and exits.  As we took out seats there was "mood music" playing.  This probably went on longer than expected because there was a football match down the road that evening and the traffic getting to the Lowry was extremely busy so the start was delayed to allow the bulk of the audience to arrive.


The set also had a large pole at each side of the stage and later on in the performance short horizontal poles appeared out of the screen.


The dancers had had to learn some different skills such as Chinese pole dancing.  The choreography was lyrical but with an edge to it and the whole effect of the projections and the dancing was quite simply stunning.


There was one particularly effective sequence where the male dancers were descending into a cave or mine.  An impression of travelling to a great depth was achieved by the screen projections showing the different layers of the earth.  The dancers then seemed to become trapped in the cave.  Were the ladies who appeared out of the screen otherworldy beings, guardian angels or memories of the trapped men?  At the post performance talk Kevin Finan said this section of the work had been influenced by the Chilean mine disaster where men were trapped underground for some time but most were eventually successfully rescued.


Although the piece had distinct episodes it flowed beautifully and it was a very rewarding and thought-provoking piece.  Do go and see it if you get the opportunity!



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