A Simple Space will leave you as breathless as it’s seven acclaimed performers. Nestled in a corner of Fringe’s Woodside Pleasure Garden, you’ll leave the streets of Northbridge behind you upon entering this world of simplicity and daring. In the intimacy, you can see every lungful of oxygen, every muscle ripple, hear the foot (or palm) fall of every spring and cartwheel. Beneath the canvas roof and in close quarters of a classic circus setting, as if manifested from a familiar fairytale, A Simple Space is nothing like what you’ve come to associate with acrobatics or your family trip to the big top; it’s a show that will reinvent your imaginings of what circus and theatre can be.
The performance is refreshingly raw, stripping back theatrics to show the full spectrum of human ability without the bells and whistles of makeup, elaborate lighting or costuming. There is an unraveled honesty in the air that transports audiences to a world where gravity-defying leaps and bounds happen in the planes of everyday surrounds. In a word, the show is dynamic, pairing strength and grace in an exhilarating combination of stunts, with a live percussion backdrop. The whole experience prevents you from being ‘sucked into’ the show, because you’ll feel part of it from the moment the ensemble take to stage. And what exactly are you a part of? Think comedic takes on your cliched strong man competition, a game of awe inspiring leap frog and a skipping rope session unfathomably taken up a notch, all set on the bare bones of stage under a stack of simple lights made to frame an energetic, incredibly complex and eccentrically precise choreography of bodies.
Somewhere, in amongst the sucker-punching grit of their performance, a cord of joyousness and play balances on a scale in perfect harmony with their casual bravery, as bodies fly, fall and laugh around the space. It’s a show for all ages, you’ll laugh, find your heart in your throat and leave reminiscing the nostalgic school yard tumbles and handstands of recess games and and dually marvelling at the wonders of the human body. It’s an unforgettable, lighthearted dance with momentum, comedy and skill not to be missed or underestimated.
Photographer: Chris Herzfeld