John Moran And His Neighbour Saori, The Nightingale Theatre, Brighton, May 18 and 19 (From The Argus)
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John Moran And His Neighbour Saori, The Nightingale Theatre, Brighton, May 18 and 19
A chance encounter between the acclaimed composer and the Japanese-born dancer who would soon become his muse has resulted in this intriguing, indefinable performance piece.
Moran has built a reputation on innovative, large-scale operas with big names attached (Uma Thurman, Allen Ginsberg), but has made what he says is a permanent transition to a more intimate combination of theatre, music and dance that features only himself and dancer Saori Tsukada.
“I would have a very difficult time going back. I would miss the eye contact, the gentle measuring of reactions, staying connected,” he says.
The piece has baffled as many reviewers as it has impressed, and Moran – whose long-term mentor is the revered American composer Philip Glass – acknowledges its experimental approach.
“Our format [which includes stories, sketches and excerpts from his operas] seems to take people by surprise – so they tell us anyway.
I think we’re an unusual combination of very serious work presented casually, and the itself sets things into a sort of new point of view for audiences.”
His stage partner and “formal muse” for the past four years is Tsukada, who Moran met in New York.
“I was in a deep depression at one point, and hadn’t created anything for a year,” he says.
“I saw Saori on the street, in front of my house. Now, I’ve worked with a lot of dancers, so I can usually spot a talented one from a mile away. Later I broke the ice by saying I guessed she was a dancer, and that I’d like her to come on tour with me and, strange girl, she said yes.”
- Starts 8.15pm, tickets cost £8.50/£6.50. Call 01273 709709.
- For a glimpse of the show, visit www.myspace.com/johnmoranandsaori