Liverpool Is Burning

House of Suarez
Unity Theatre (6th-7th November 2008)

Reviewed by Alfonso Barata

This production is one of the many events of this year’s Homotopia festival, which throughout November brings to Liverpool an array of activities from cabaret to poetry, celebrating lesbian, bay, bisexual and transgender home-grown and international creative talent.

Short but intense, Liverpool is Burning is a theatre dance piece that looks at the vogue dance phenomenon that was so influential in the gay scene in the nineties.

Its artistic director, Darren Suarez, has given it the name of ‘vogueography’ and has been working on the development of this production for two years.

Like in a restaurant meal, we are offered three different acts or courses. The event is about forty minutes long, with no interval or pause.

The night is introduced with a short number by a group of young dancer who present a saucy and sensual choreography that welcomes the audience to House of Suarez.

Then five female dancers engage in a very interesting piece, a beautiful display of technique and graceful, elegant and fast movements; their piece is not very long either but its length suits its intensity.

The night reaches its climax with the final number, in which three male dancers engage in a humorous and dramatic choreography not exempt from parody; this is underpinned by the brief presence on stage of a compère.

Combining different styles of music, sometimes even mixing them, and sometimes with no music at all, the three dancers offer us an accomplished and assured sequence of steps and movements, sometimes as a trio, sometimes as a duo and at times by going solo.

Of intense physicality, this number acts as a perfect finale for what it was an interesting event that by combining different musical genres and dance styles manages to produce a visually rich experience.

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