Dance Massive is on in Melbourne right now. I’ve been performing Inert with the wonderful Shannon Bott. In Melbourne the big dance company is Chunky Move and they make some pretty interesting (and quite diverse) work. Their work in Massive is called Mortal Engine and it has had a serious amount of publicity in town (I suspect they didn’t cycle over to their local Pilates studio to drop off some flyers). The main media quote Chunky has been using to promote the work is from the UK’s Metro review of Mortal Engine at Edinburgh Festival 2008:
The effect is terrifying, beautiful, unique and absolutely unforgettable
I have quite a strong memory of Mortal Engine getting luke-warm reviews in the UK in The Guardian, and in The Times. I just can’t figure out why Chunky didn’t run with “dazzling display of high-tech visual effects cannot disguise an emptiness inside”.
Now, this isn’t meant as a Chunky Bash (so easy to knock the people at the top of the pile in any town), and I am as guilty as they are in terms of ‘pulling quotes’ (although I don’t have a publicity department). It does, however, frighten me the degree to which consumer capitalism needs misrepresentation to feed itself. It is nourished by the generation of hype at any cost: in order to get your money our product needs to be thought to be better than yours.
I don’t want to play.