The body twice

Keith Gallasch: Jonathan Sinatra, Burning In

Ever on the lookout for new permutations of real and virtual bodies interacting in performance–as dancers explore and exploit new media–I was struck by a moment in Jonathon Sinatra's Burning In. Writhing at an angle, head to the wall, Sinatra is joined by a larger than life image of himself on an adjoining wall. The first appearance is rather ghost-like and becomes even more so as another shadowy Sinatra separates off from the virtual one. The original anchored dancertwists sharply and quickly, his duplicates duet gracefully, splitting, merging, splitting.

This performance of doubles is in fact 2 performances, one on the pavement alongside parked cars followed by another inside the Omeo Studio. The first evokes nothing less than someone found in the street, struggling to sit up, crawl, stand, grip at unyielding car bodies for support. The essence of the movement is a kind of off-centredness which is repeated in the studio performance, but no longer always from the ground up. Long moments of near stillness are followed by formal and informal patternings of movement and light that open out the studio space. Even where the body seems to move with most certainty (ghosting another double in an often Rosalind Crisp-like choreographic vocabulary) there always seems to be the inclination to fall, to slip out of frame, to settle uncomfortably, to barely rescue the self, making for an uneasy subtext amplified by Mark Mitchell's dream-like lighting, David Corbet's elemental sound score and Peter Oldham's assured video work.

Jonathan Sinatra, Burning In, Omeo Studio

RealTime issue #45 Oct-Nov 2001 pg. web

© Keith Gallasch; for permission to reproduce apply to realtime@realtimearts.net

1 October 2001