A Night of Nude Tragedy! (Video contains nudity)

A Night of Nude Tragedy! (Video contains nudity)

Last week my sister and I witnessed a Tragedie. A dance tragedie. A nude tragedie. And no it did not involve The Bee Gees.

Award-winning choreographer Olivier Dubois makes his long-awaited UK debut with his dance masterpiece Tragedie, which sees nine men and nine women explore a range of concise and repetitious phrases of movement in their birthday suits.

That is to say COMPLETELY STARKERS.

Description from the company:

Focusing on the anatomy of the human body, Tragédie sees nine men and nine women stripped bare both literally and figuratively to explore the human condition. In their exposed nudity, the dancers combine concise movement to create a hypnotic chorus where body and soul meet. The action on stage continues to build, creating an engrossing tribal atmosphere, as the piece reaches a thrilling crescendo.

PARIS ART described it as: “Powerful and overwhelming…the bodies, white hot, exhaust themselves as part of a sublime, unreal machine”.

I would describe it as: “Exhibitionist and underwhelming…the bodies, sweaty, exhaust themselves as part of a strange, uninhibited naturist camp”.

In other words: Complete b****cks (excuse the pun)

While I am all for embracing and appreciating the human body, watching it on stage writhing around to ‘music’ was just plain weird. And frankly quite boring.

After I had got over the initial shock of seeing so many breasts, bums, and er…dangly bits, the uniqueness wore off and the whole thing became very contrived.

For the first half an hour, all the nudists did was walk up and down the stage, to the sound of a very annoying monotone gong. While for the first five minutes it all seemed quite artistic, it was obvious by the fidgeting and rustling of bags that the audience soon grew weary.

Then came a bit more walking around the stage, albeit at a faster pace, then some quick changing montages/tableux, followed by some rather erotic thrusting and jiggling accompanied by strobe lighting. A scene where all the dancer’s rolled over each other to form a mass of heaped bodies was pretty effective, although I was a tad concerned that there may have been an accidental poke in the eye here and there… and I don’t mean by a finger.

The production ended with each member shuffling irritatingly slowly off the stage, leaving the curviest member of the nine females standing defiantly on stage before she too walked backwards into the darkness.

I wasn’t sure what the whole point of the nudity was. Nude body stockings would have sufficed in showing the different shapes and contours of the human anatomy, without revealing all the bits. Health and safety must have had a field day.

Still, it was another experience to cross off on my bucket list.

If you like looking at naked bodies of all shapes and sizes then this is the show for you. If you are looking for a compelling contemporary dance spectacle with a unique artistic twist, then this show is not for you.

Apparently, Olivier Dubois is an award-winning choreographer who has been at the cutting edge of the French contemporary dance scene since 1999. But his long-awaited choreographic UK debut should definitely have been left on the cutting room floor.

Tragédie has just finished it’s run at Sadler’s Wells theatre. So you can no longer buy tickets.

Thank God.

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7 Comments

  1. 2nd January 2015 / 10:29 am

    At least they saved on the cost of costumes! LOL!!!

    • 2nd January 2015 / 3:51 pm

      Yes you could definitely look at it that way!

  2. 15th May 2014 / 7:18 am

    @Olivier Dubois… I’m not surprised ad he’s French like Benjamin Millepied(Black Swan), Natalie Portman’s hubby and actual director of French Opera House… 🙂

    • 15th May 2014 / 7:35 am

      Ye I wasn’t keen on that film either!

  3. 12th May 2014 / 10:59 pm

    Having viewed roughly half of the video, I’m entirely in accord with you, Ekaterina. I think that they all deserve praise for showing us how varied are their parts – small, large, thin, plump, flat, protruding – the whole gamut ! – and not a skerrick of embarrassment among ’em.
    Your opinion re skin suits I also endorse: would’ve got the message across without all the glistening.
    You’re too young to remember “Hair”: I can’t help being reminded of that one glorious moment when the entire cast is revealed sans anything, motionless. It was … ooh-err ! But it actually had some meaning.
    This ? – nup. Just a play for audience numbers.

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