Theatre Review: 'Studies In Motion – The Hauntings of Eadweard Muybridge'

It’s not sufficient to say that Kevin Kerr has written about as thoughtful and poetic a dramaturgical account of the live and innovations of photo and cinema pioneer Eadweard Muybridge as any long-time fan (such as myself) of Muybridge’s work could have hoped for.

Similarly it’s not enough to say that the movement choreographed by Crystal Pike brings Muybridge’s Studies to life in an inspired and visceral manner, or that Robert Gardiner’s set, lighting, and video design reinvents this field in service of a brilliant live staging of Muybridge’s vision.

It would be but an afterthought to mention that Patrick Pennefather’s music and Kim Collier’s direction set just the right modernist tone (perhaps with steampunk overtones?) for this tale which seems at once of its time – that is, the late 1800s – and utterly contemporary, or to aver that the actors and dancers hit the right notes for performances that allow them to fully embody the characters they reanimate nightly.

No, all of this would be insufficient without emphatically expressing that, to a greater degree than any work of theatre I’ve seen recently, Studies In Motion feels of a piece: all elements – words, music, acting, direction, choreography, visual design – all vibrate in a single, richly complex and utterly satisfying, chord.

It is this unity, which undoubtedly comes from that intensely collaborative process by which the Electric Company Theatre came to create this work, which is this production’s ultimate strength.

more in Theatre Review     |     posted Nov 14th, 2010 at 12:54am     

All Content Copyright © SEE Magazine 2008 About Us Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use Contest Disclaimer