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Dancing Difference | SCPA Review

Dancing Difference immediately enticed the audience. The close range of the stage, dancers and audience created an intimacy unlike any other. Offered in collaboration with Inside Outside Theatre, a company that works with artists with disabilities, this incredible piece was mesmerizing and captured the hearts of those who attended. 

With three live performances and a short documentary in the middle, the work of this piece was amazingly well done. The first dancers entered through the audience onto the stage, one performer in a wheel chair and the other standing beside him. It was brilliant to watch as the man got out of his chair and they both began dancing on the floor captivating the attention of everyone. Creating beautiful pictures with lifts, done by both performers, they showed undeniable strength as they lifted one another throughout the duet. The partners’ wonderful connection and ability to carry one another was incredible to watch, leaving a smile on everyone’s face.

Next, came the second duo, creating a much different vibe as they entered on a bicycle in a very slapstick manner. Using their vocals and symmetry of movement, they left everyone wanting more. The use of simple props was absolutely amazing. From a bottle of Coke to a sneaker, I was left impressed with the power these two brought to the stage.

Moving forward, we were presented with the short documentary on one incredible woman, who is wheelchair bound but who has a brilliance that is not. Following a day in her life, we were shown the struggles and the incredible way her perseverance and determination has carried her so far.

To wrap up this beautiful gift of a performance, the original two artists came back to the stage to finish off the piece. The overall energy of the audience was beaming with excitement  and curiosity to see what else they could offer. Using only a table and very limited space in their dance, the focus was on the connection of the dancers and the audio they played throughout their second duet. Having moments of stillness and hesitation as well as small movements and unique use of space, the final performance kept the bar high and finished off the Dancing Difference, or as it was re-named Forward Movement, with a bang.

Dance and movement truly has no limits. This performance was an exciting example of that, capturing the hearts of all who attended.

SadieBeth Rieb is a first year BA Dance Major at the University of Calgary. With 18 years of dancing under her belt, and dancing running in the family she is excited to progress in the field of performing arts at the University.