- Miles Hedley
MASS HYSTERIA on Trinity Laban YouTube channel
At what must be one of the weirdest times most of us has ever experienced, all-female dance collective Mass Hysteria have conjured up a weird and wonderful lockdown piece entitled in this .net which is now playing on Trinity Laban’s YouTube channel.
Twelve self-isolating performers, filming themselves on mobile phones at home in Britain, the continent and India, have created a suitably unsettling mood through dance, the use of unexpected camera angles and a darkly brooding soundtrack that throws all our old certainties to the four winds.
The creation, led by Julia Kayser and Katie Serridge and scored by Monika Błaszczak, opens with such extreme close-ups of parts of the dancers’ bodies that it’s disturbingly hard to tell what we are looking at until the camera draws back to arm’s length.
Later, the phones are laid on the floor, which creates extraordinary foreshortened images that distort the shapes of the dancers in a way that is unnerving yet totally absorbing. And the sequence featuring the troupe’s feet is magnificently surreal.
Kayser, Serridge and Błaszczak perform in this .net with Hannah Aebi, Dominique Baker, Lydia Walker, Jennie Boultbee, Willa Faulkner, Sophie Page, Marlen Pflueger, Rebecca Piersanti and Nina Richard. Between them, they have created something that perfectly captures the all-embracing oddness of the world in which we now find ourselves. I can’t praise it too highly.
It’s available to watch now at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ccGTAlAJ-V0