Oz Asia Festival, “Cry Jailolo” (Dunstan Playhouse, Festival Theatre, Adelaide) (24/9/15)
Jailolo, part of the Indonesian archipelago, has coughed-up a troupe of seven fit young men who (choreographed by Eko Supriyanto) present a genuinely novel dance sequence based on indigenous tribal myth from North Malaku, with modern overtones of environmental threat to a pristine local environment. Sinuous, mesmerizing, ephemeral and fluid, involving moves that are both new and alien, this is an interpretation that intrigues and engages lovers of dance and agnostics alike. Their unusual motion, use of light and shade, stillness, subtle use of hand and foot for percussion, and sense of space, is remarkable, so that we found ourselves guessing at the next move and counting the dancers, to confirm there were still (or only) seven of them there.
Emma and Lesley welcome the troupe, togged-up and street-legal
No Asia Festival without a dragon (above). No legislature without some mauve…(SA Parliament House below)
Loitering afterwards over a drink in the Dunstan Playhouse, we were taken aback at the portrait looming at us: former South Australian Premier Donald Dunstan (1926-1999), perhaps the last South Premier to belong in our state pantheon, a deservedly renowned patron of the arts, Fiji born, who (with respect to artist Salvador Loreto) surely deserves a better portrait than this grotesque and disproportionate caricature, a bastard cross twixt the worst of the packing crates prize and David Byrne’s oversized suit from Stop Making Sense.