This Resolution! triple bill saw all four choreographers performing in their pieces, something not unusual for Resolution! where funds are tight (or, in many cases, non-existent). As is also not unusual for this new dance platform, the night’s offering was a mixed bag.

As the hashtag in the title might indicate, social media was the theme of penny & jules#Factory. The audience were encouraged to tweet @pennyandjules during the piece - a live feed(back) in dialogue with their exploration of how we use social media not just to share, but to create our lives. The two solos that opened the piece showcased the dancers’ fluidity and comfort with the floor. However, with the introduction of the technology (a video projection mash of photos, footage of the dancers, programming code, and overly-long quotes), the potential established in the opening section was soon lost. While there were some interesting concepts at play - the relationship between the individual and their virtual self, for example - they only occasionally came across. The performers were dominated by the technology, but there was not enough in the video projections to really interest. Was this irony intended? Unclear.

Wayne ParsonsMeeting was the gem of the evening and clearly the work of a more experienced choreographer. Although this was Parsons’ London choreographic debut, National Dance Company of Wales has toured three of his works (he danced for NDCW, along with Sydney Dance Company and Richard Alston Dance Company) and he has also created a work for Monmouthshire Youth Dance Company.

A duet between Parsons and Katie Lusby, Meeting explores the distortion of memory and how a story changes with each retelling. The performers compared notes on their movement, correcting and adjusting each other as they went along. Sometimes these corrections were good-natured, other times less so; the power dynamic between the two performers shifted back and forth as they negotiated their conflicting memories. Oscillating between simple gestures and more expansive, dynamic outbursts, the movement was characterised by idiosyncrasies. These gave the choreography freshness, offering moments of oddity and humour that charmed. 

Exploring the distortion of memory might be the conceptual intent, but, ultimately, Meeting’s accomplishment lies in its intelligent insight into the dynamics of a two-person relationship. Alternating between bickering and agreeing, being vulnerable and in control, the underlying dynamic between the two performers was one of tenderness. Parsons and Lusby’s strong, genuine presences resonated powerfully, conveying an endearing sense of humanity, with all its quirks and flaws, throughout their Meeting.

Place in Between is a solo created and performed by Botis Seva. It opens with Seva facing away from the audience in a soft pool of light. He moves slowly from one side of the stage to the other, the spasmodic, almost violent movement concentrated in his torso. This piece challenges the audience to slow their pace right down and be present with the performer in his slow, tortured struggle. This is an exploration of faith: from the kyrie-like music to the lighting suggesting church windows to the praying and genuflection, religious references abound. The texts scattered across the floor may be another religious reference, but this is unclear; they do not add much.

Seva’s strong presence and inward focus is powerful and his slow progress through space provides something akin to a meditative experience. However, the theme is a large one and the development of the piece doesn’t accomplish as much as it could. Despite compelling imagery, something gets lost in the telling, and at twenty-five minutes in length, I wonder if his drawn-out internal struggle is, ultimately, worth it.