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Review: A Couple of Humans at Summerhall Main Hall – Ed Fringe

Review by Kate Gaul

Helsinki based company Tsuumi Dance Theatre presents “A Couple of Humans” as part of From Start to Finnish, a showcase of Finnish performing arts, at Summerhall this Edinburgh Fringe. This two-person interdisciplinary performance delves into two fundamental questions: ‘Who am I?’ and ‘Who are we together?’ Created and performed by Riikka and Antti Puumalainen, we are told the piece explores the complexity of human relationships in an increasingly digital world. It is very conceptual and although the dancers are completely engaging as human beings (and highly skilled) it is all a bit vague as to what we are getting out of this. Contemporary dance can be like this!

Tsuumi Dance Theatre

As we enter the auditorium the performers are sitting right at the downstage edge of the stage making eye contact and generally greeting the audience as we enter. This welcome open present and positive energy continues throughout the performance. They are fully clothed and as the performance begins, they swap out for the everyday clothing into ultra-long tight which can cover their bodies. As they move, they can get inside of each other’s garments and inside each other’s personal space. Quite literally.

The dancers then use cameras to project their images and silhouettes onto the back wall. There is a soundscape to accompany the movement. It is easy to interpret this as being “about relationships” – with that context it’s easy to see what each chunk is about in terms of the male-female relationship presented. But as I say it’s hard to fathom what specific findings remain.

Image Supplied

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