The church was silent. The rustles and settling of the audience were allowed to calm. In silence and in low light we took in the gentle movement of light white cloth softly rippling and billowing. Giving time to arrive, to notice our breathing. Eventually two figures slowly appeared bearing accordians. Breathing accordians, the opening and closing of the bellows connecting with our breathing and encouraging us to expand our breath into our lungs, my ribs opening as the concertina.  An old man balancing a beautiful long and twisted driftwood branch on his shoulder slowly and carefully entered, the light behind him casting shadows of the fragile balancing act. The stick left the man’s shoulder to find a home leaning against the strong stone pillar.

Gradually sound and music was introduced, dancers moving between and before the white cloth. Suddenly a magic of light traces across floor, fabric and bodies, animating the space. Journeyings of fine glowing lines appearing and disappearing on the moving surfaces.

A woman carrying a woven basket filled with torch light, the beams illuminating her face as she wandered the space placing light. The pace quickens; voices and sounds erupt from the dancers and musicians. To the floor, the floor. Bodies down and up and across. More white fabric held between and over the dancers. The projection of light leaves and reappears, catching the movement of the dancers and the billowed cloth.

Like the wind when it has spent its force the calm returns, echoes and traces of its breath linger.

It was refreshing to be in a different performance space. As a performer it was also good to see the use of alternative lighting sources (torches, projection, one stage lamp) and the magic they can create. The elements of timing, set, light, movement and sound contributed with absolute integrity to the concept of Pneûma.

Ana Barbour

6th March 2015

The Pneûma Project was devised by Miranda Tufnell, dance artist, David Ward, visual artist and Sylvia Hallett, musician

With dancers Cai Tomos, Eeva Maria Mutka, Tim Rubidge and musician Jonah Brody