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Adelaide Fringe

Fringe review: A Simple Space

Adelaide Fringe

Seven exceptional athletes show off their virtuosity in A Simple Space – a hugely impressive, intimate acrobatic showcase at the Royal Croquet Club. ★★★★½

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Two women and five men from internationally acclaimed Adelaide circus company Gravity & Other Myths performed for a packed Pinky Flat grand auditorium crowd of several hundred on Friday night.

Plainly dressed, they lined up at the back of a modest-sized empty stage before releasing chaos: flipping, running, bounding and falling bodies everywhere.

It’s astounding from the get-go, but this show is all about escalation.

Accepting the raucous audience response to an extraordinary feat early on, some of the performers let slip a mischievous grin, suggesting what turns out to be true: If you thought that was impressive, wait till you see what’s coming.

Audience members have to keep adjusting their standard of amazement upward with each routine, as the acrobats demonstrate enormous physical strength, balance, flexibility and discipline.

A live synth drum pad soundtrack by Adelaide percussionist and composer Sirins, aka Elliot Zoerner (listen below), gives each scene an otherworldly quality and builds the excitement and the tension.

There’s a bit of risky-looking audience participation, some wholesome physical comedy, a super-fast body-slapping percussive interlude, the solving of a Rubik’s Cube in incomparable circumstances and not much dialogue.

Most notably, A Simple Space – ostensibly a circus show – rejects all the usual conceits. With no wild costumes, make-up, props or sets, the performance eschews the fantastical and draws focus on the human.

Stark lighting from each corner of the stage reveals the intense concentration, the sweat and the trust between the acrobats, balancing precariously, lifting powerfully and landing impossibly on each other’s shoulders, heads, hands and backs.

It’s a delightful and stunning tour de force.

Gravity & Other Myths is presenting A Simple Space at the Royal Croquet Club until March 19. Read more InDaily Fringe reviews and stories here.

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