As a timid twenty-something I had no clue, as to what lay behind the self-pleasuring rabbit head, slumped against the gallery wall. Nor did I understand the meaning of two characters in camouflage, pulping tomatoes with their chests, till the place smelled like a Bloody Mary at breakfast. Oh performance art how I adore you. You invite weird and wondrous things to seep into our lives and demand nothing but attention… and now, back to the egg.
How do you like your eggs in the morning? If your answer is cracked open, poured beneath a proscenium arch, dancing and prancing across the floor, singing existential angst-ridden egg-based swing jazz numbers, then you are in the right place. And that place? Flesh #3 here in well-cultured Hull.
Despite the name sounding like the latest addition to a schlock gore fest franchise, Flesh is a performance art/dance/ dance theatre eggstravanganza (they made me, honest) curated by Sian and Fen of Non Applicables fame and Steph Potter from prize-winning company LO:CUS Dance Theatre… An open call-out months earlier, results in a finely honed evening of beguiling entertainment inside the Kingston Social Club.
The décor is traditional working-class social club, with rows of dartboards on each wall and a dusty framed picture of their royal madge’s Liz and Phil watching over proceedings. Tonight the place is decked out in glitzy tinsel curtains, disco balls and fairy lights, ready for a very special birthday party. It’s been exactly one year since the first Flesh night, since then Flesh has been NFA, until returning to its birthplace and spiritual home on Bev Road. Shiny Balloon letters spell FLESH and invite polaroid snaps of fun, and a magic marker challenge that…. that takes a bit of beating.
Glitz, glamour, dance and dartboards; musical chairs, birthday cake and prizes.Plus the nostalgic spectacle of the Prom King and Queen competition, all to the sound of a decade-defining eighties playlist, to pop your socks off till you drop.
After the egg came prehistoric erotica – not as far-fetched as you might think – a salutary spoken word tale about evolution and mobility scooters called E-VULUVA-lution. Pamela DeMenthe shocks the more sheltered souls, with her raunchy rex romp, with well-researched splashes of local colour and meticulous attention to detail and graphic role-play. The image of those great big boulders swinging from side to side, has left an imprint hard to shake.
As ‘Girls on Film’ plays out a rumour is spread that Simon le Bon (Duran Duran lead-singer ) did once piss in a flower pot at a party in Pimlico… it’s been that kind of night.
It Started with Jason Donovan – be still my beating heart… lessons in love with a Jason devotee, that weaves the swoonsome Aussie popstar’s life with that of mega-fan Sarah Blanc. In the days of Smash Hits Poll Winners Party and the pop factory of SAW, Australian day-time soap Neighbours became shop window for suntanned babes with luscious perms, to brighten up drizzly dullsville U.K. The charts were a playground for Scott and Charlene to tease the nation, with their sickly sweet will -they-won’t-they romance… The memories come flooding back as heartthrob Jase’s vocal warbles Too many broken hearts… and Sealed With a kiss ring out… I can see that life-defining moment now, as Kylie a vision of petite perfection jumps neatly into his big strong arms and…… blub blub blub…
Like those pioneers of the seventies that made Hull a hotbed for performance art, paving the way for the time-based and site specific creations of HTBA, Flesh is a continuation of that proud tradition.
“Jouer à nouveau œuf”
Flesh #3 starred you the audience, alongside:
Theordora Van Der Beek – Egg
Jenny Morgan – E-VULUVA-lution
Sarah Blanc – It Started with Jason Donovan
And your ‘ever-gracious’ hostesses The Sinews: Fenella Ryan, Sian Myers, Steph Potter
Flesh is a Fenella Ryan/Sian Myers/Steph Potter co-production supported by Hull Dance
Get In Touch With Flesh https://www.facebook.com/fleshhull/
Company Site: LO:CUS Dance Theatre