Sydney Dance Company’s new production ‘Orb’ at the Roslyn Packer Theatre

Orb, a collaborative effort between Rafael Bonachela, Sydney Dance Company’s Artistic Director, and the Taiwanese Choregrapher Cheng Tsung-lung, is a delight for contemporary ballet fans.

Both mysterious and intriguing, the piece tells the story of the power of the moon in a first act called Full Moon, and it explores the connections that exist between humans in a second act called Ocho.

Sydney Dance Company Orb

Seated on the second row, I could witness the strength and agility of the slender yet strong bodies of the dancers. I could hear the screeching of their feet on the stage. I even noticed the powerful noise of their breath as their bodies brutally changed rhythm and started to twirl around.

Both acts started in complete chaos, with an obvious and voluntary lack of coordination between the dancers. The beginning of Full Moon was even scary with the mortuary appearance of Holly Doyle combined with a spooky music composed by Lim Giong. The dancers’ movements seemed inhuman, even mechanical.

Sydney Dance Company Orb

On the contrary, Bonachela’s Ocho showcased the humanity of the dancers. A large spectrum of emotions was depicted. Liberty and courage were depicted when Nelson Earl broke free, being the first one to get out of the box on stage; envy when the dancers who were still in the box stared at the ones dancing out of it; love emphasized by the light show orchestrated by Damien Cooper; and fear when the dance choreography took shape of a beautiful street fight.

At the end of both acts, all eight performers were dancing in unison. The repetition of the series of dancing steps looked like a pattern or a loop. These harmonious endings completely contrasted with the chaos of the beginnings.

Sydney Dance Company Orb

At the end of the day, Orb was a great illustration of Carl Jung’s famous quote: ‘In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order’.

Disclosure: The Plus Ones were invited guests of Sydney Dance Company.
Image credit: Pedro Greig.

Article originally published on The Plus Ones Sydney

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