Since her MA at Leeds Beckett 2016-2017, Virginia has been interested in writing as part of her performance practice: as research, as performance, as reflection, as exercise.
Virginia was a dance reviewer for New Zealand’s online review platform theatreview between 2012 and 2013, writing about dance, cabaret, and musical theatre shows in Wellington. Responses to her reviews were mixed – from artists having temper tantrums, blocking her on all social media, to personal thanks over email and in depth interviews on air.
Under her own name and the pseudonym Betty Lightbulb, Virginia reviewed over 25 performances, including Where did it all go right?
Audience interaction refreshingly brilliant
There’s a big distinction in attitude towards entertainment or art in the contemporary dance scene: either with self-proclaimed artistes refusing to pander to their audience, and grasping onto their integrity to make their envisioned work, or others chasing career longevity by ensuring their work has commercial appeal.
This either/or decision has been trampled by the wonder that is ponydance Theatre Company, an Irish-based ensemble presenting quirky and commercial yet brilliantly contemporary-minded choreography to this year’s Dance Base offerings. Being accessible has certainly not jeopardised the sheer freshness and cleverness of this work.
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Here is her review of Chimera by Sascha Perfect.
Haunting, Dark, Beauty
There is dark beauty in the haunting hybrid characters that Sascha Perfect inhabits in her movement and sound world Chimera, a work premiered at The Body Festival in Christchurch in 2010 and now continuing its development in Wellington, with its Wellington premiere originally programmed for the 2012 Dance Wellington Festival which was sadly cancelled..
A series of images that morph and travel: Sascha Perfect – woman; the dead body decomposing, doll-like; the crone, crumbling to become a bundle of rags; a pagan ritual participant, chanting; the accusing gaze of the maiden spinning her empty bird cage. Again: Chris Prosser – man; an eccentric at his desk, blindly and blithely swiping away the enemy and devouring flesh; a musical source, marking territory with violin twangs; a support to the woman yet existing in his own exclusive death ritual.
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