The room was dimly lit and scattered with trash in the middle of the stage.

I was worried a bit; what if one of the lovely little siblings watching the performance with their parents had just spilled the rubbish on the floor?

“Should someone pick those up?” I thought to myself.

Then the lights fade out, a performer walks out with a broom and a voiceover to explain. Our protagonist had gone out onto the stage with a spoken word track to clean the streets.

Then…Oops. The music cuts from the speaker and the spoken word track stops. This hiccup of the Bluetooth speaker going out had me thinking the rest of the play may be a work in progress but I was terribly wrong.

The protagonist maintained her composure and then the dancing began. There was a wild swinging about of props and a cluster of performers rushing the stage.

They worked like a colony of ants: strong, mighty, and focused in building different sets for the play with white plastic boxes the size of four microwaves put together.

All the while they moved in the motion of dance, stacking boxes according to the rhythm like a machine. The first set formed was a kitchen, where our characters were pleasantly introduced one-by-one with fiery breakdowns of music and quick solo performances.

After these first tastes of dance, I was really shocked at the quality and found myself with my jaw hanging in a smile. The audience wanted to applaud them on the moves they were making but the production was moving so quickly they were forced to just sit down and have their eyes try to keep pace of the action.

The characters all danced in their own style and shined. By this point, I had forgotten the hiccup at the beginning of the play and the spoken word narrator had come back in to lead us into the plot.

The spoken voice was not attributed to one character but kept in the third person to express observation of the streets. Rather than using the sound of their voices, the actors displayed their expressive art through the form of dance.

Meanwhile, the performance was calculated and well-practiced to keep in time with the voice track. All the dances were high octane and carried out in one fell swoop.

As the plot moved along, more and more performances shook the ground and rallied the audience to lead to the point of Love, War, and Recycling. The play was managed beautifully both in following the spoken word and the skill of dancing.

Eventually, the play led to the characters uniting even past the conflicts of Love and War. The streets were made clean. The art that this play produced showed how weak violence is and how strong are people that can forgive.


Photo: Steve Shaw

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