As part of the Perth International Arts Festival, the West Australian Ballet brings its newest offering TAKUTO to the Quarry Amphitheatre. The cavernous location provides a natural feeling to the performance, the carved rocks amplifyng the sound of the dancers and their music.

The performance began with In Transit, beautifully arranged by Columbian-Belgian choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa. This piece is not one for traditionalists, snobs or fools. In Transit is contemporary art at its best, a brilliant mixture of sound and movement combining a sense of tedium, fear, and chaos.  A special mention must go to the many people who created the soundscape accompanying In Transit. The cacophony of irregular sounds fit the performance perfectly, adorning it with real emotive power.

The second act was The Clearest Light, an exploration of the effect a thought changing event has on one’s experience of the world. The vastly talented Christopher Hill choreographed the piece, as well as designing the costumes and composing the score. The performance itself was beautifully delivered, the dancers’ skill unquestionably evident. At times, however, I found it difficult to connect the performance with Hill’s theme. In reflection, this reduced the artfulness of the second showing to some degree.

The third act was my favourite of the night. Ballet 101 was an instruction of the many fundamental positions of ballet. Choreographed by Eric Gauthier and performed by Andre Santos, the piece is a combination of skill and theatricality that had the audience in constant fits of laughter. If you aren’t a fan of ballet after watching this then you’re either blind or facing the wrong way.

The final act, the titular Takuto was also choreographed by Eric Gauthier. The piece is a captivating mixture of rhythm and dance. Drumming was incorporated into the movement of the work, with the dancers creating their own diegetic sound and timing. The synchronised movements of the performers are particularly impressive in this piece above others as their poor timing would not have been easily concealed when thumping on a massive drum. Gauthier notes that the piece isn’t just about the dancing, “it’s about all of the elements coming together.” Takuto delivers this perfectly.

Words by Tyler Morgan

TAKUTO: Ballet at the Quarry runs from 3-25 February at the Quarry Amphitheatre.  Tickets on sale here