600 seconds is a concept that allows you to see a group or emerging artists in short, sharp performances. Hosted by The Blue Room, each performer is given 600 seconds to tell their story, show their art, and get you swept up in the moment. There is no limit on what the performers can do which was demonstrated beautifully in the variety of silent comedy, heart-wrenching performance, dance and throat singing that I was privy to seeing.
Watching local performers, producers and artists exhibit such stripped back work made me think about what they were trying to say, how talented they were, especially in the context of conveying messaging within such constraints, and how excited I was for what they would produce next.
Three of the performances resonated with me, all for incredibly different reasons, and I am looking forward to seeing what they present to the Perth arts scene next.
Finders/Keepers – Kelly-Jo Fry Writer/Director/Actor
This piece was extremely simple; two actors, one prop and some beautiful monologues. Kelly-Jo Fry’s writing demonstrated a wonderful understanding of people’s thoughts, feelings and worries and her delivery of such understand was a mix of deliverable prose and understated movements.
Love and hurt can be difficult subjects to portray because of their personal nature. Fry’s exploration of that, and the obvious messaging that love is different for everyone made the production more accessible. Notably, her performance itself was wonderful and full of meaning. You could feel the hurt, the panic, the sadness and the relief that she felt.
The Dog – Reilly O’Byrne-Inglis – Devisor and Performer
Creating laughter is a wonderful skill and Reilly demonstrated her ability to do that from the get-go.
Her piece was simple and explored the weight of the world, internal struggles, the need to be taken seriously, and the fight to let go and relax. Her exploration was a little unorthodox; as Clown with marshmallows for problems.
Each movement was executed so purposefully and the entire audience was laughing from start to finish. The emotion and engagement she was able to create, without saying a word was refreshing, as were her performance. The silliness gave a lightness to the show was the gladly received.
Waist Deep in Shattered Glass – Ayesha Zatz – Choreographer
Sometimes, dance just takes your breath away. Being able to tell a story so poignantly without a word or sound spoken by the people in front of you, that really is an art.
The movements and the silence that was presented as the three dancers pushed and pulled with each other’s emotions, trying to help but hurting further, and finally focussing on saving the other person, was beautiful. The deliberate movements pulled you in and swept you off your feat. The entire room was silent, apart from the music accompanying them and the odd exhale.
The story they told made you desperately want to help, you could see a fall before it came, you wanted to help them survive. Their movments were like a painting, washing over you, reengaging you as the light changed across them. It was wonderful.