REVIEW: I Get So Emotional Child (Basement Theatre)

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Pictures: Jinki Cambronero

[Raspberry sauce with a side of body horror]

Jessie McCall’s newest choreographic providing I Get So Emotional Child demonstrates the inexhaustible vocabulary of the human kind. Palpable feminine emotion collides with references to the male gaze in an engrossing and stimulating work. 

The motion targeted I Get So Emotional Child presents a tightly woven collection of photographs and motifs pertaining to each realities and constructed fantasies of the feminine physique and feminine emotion. The performers Sofia McIntyre, Anu Khapung, Sharvon Mortimer, and Evie Logan (alternate performer) are wrapped in pastel mesh, nude leotards, and plastic underpants and appear to be on the verge of collapsing right into a pile of bloodied limbs at any given level. There may be the feeling of being consumed by oneself, maybe the uterus is a blackhole and the gravitational pull it exerts is just generally bearable. 

The piece is one in all shimmering juxtapositions : acquainted karaoke songs are warped into nightmarish dance tracks, a large pink claw clip turns into a toothed maw, an grownup lady dances with blood working down her thighs whereas sporting a tee-shirt which reads “Babygirl”. 

The set design amplifies these contrasts. Directly paying homage to an abattoir, a 70s love resort, and Meret Oppenheim’s surrealist Object (a fur lined teacup and saucer for these unfamiliar with the work), the stage is marked out by curtains of clear PVC and a deep carpet of creamy fur. All of it appears to talk to a central exploration of the acquainted made unfamiliar, anticipated firmness (the stage for instance) made smooth to the touch, and the our bodies of girls, so typically required to be malleable and receptive, made defiant. 

I Get So Emotional Child is balanced on the knife’s edge between the perceptive and the perverse. Typically elements are pressured off stability by theatrical limitations. Shadowy pink stains on the carpet of fur left by earlier runs present an overview for each the general construction of the piece and a map of the choreography. I’m unsure if these stains take a few of the punch out of the punchline (which I can’t totally spoil) or if the penultimate motion was devised to reply to the impossibility of protecting the cream fur clear. Both manner, it reads as an opportunistic tilt on the gendering of home labour. 

At different factors the work delivers moments of really satisfying theatricality. A mix of well-chosen props and hid lighting sources produce a flood of putting photographs, nature intersects with science fiction, visible references wash over one another in layers. 

Motion targeted works ask extra of their audiences – for some this might be unfamiliar in a world of heavy exposition and the fixed breaking of the fourth wall. Audiences ought to know, nonetheless, that the results of their invested time and focus is way richer than that of being spoon-fed a story. In participating in interpretation, the work turns into a palimpsest, with every viewers member layering their particular person information and experiences onto the motion earlier than them. This shared that means making is evidenced by laughs of recognition. 

I Get So Emotional Child is a posh and fascinating investigation of the expression of feelings, of inhabiting a feminine physique, and of inhabiting a hostile world. Jessie McCall and her group of collaborators have created a piece which emphatically proves that the physique can specific what the mouth can’t.  
 
I Get So Emotional Child performs Basement Theatre the eleventh to the 22nd of October, 2022

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