Now in its astonishing 39th year, the annual London International Mime Festival has become one of the highlights of the theatre calendar in the capital. Although the essential wordlessness comes into it, LIMF has expanded to include circus, dance and performance art – and new production from Gandini Juggling is just one of the many examples of this relatively new development.
For those not in the know, the Gandini collective has been on the scene for 20 years, leading the marriage of contemporary dance and juggling, as well as incorporating mathematics into their art. Their latest production 4 x 4 Ephemeral Architectures follows the international success of their Pina Bausch-inspired sensation Smashed and features an unlikely mix of juggling and classical ballet.
The new show may sound like an unusual combination (maths, juggling and ballet?!) but rest assured that Sean Gandini’s elite jugglers, working alongside four classical dancers choreographed by former Royal Ballet First Artist Ludovic Ondiviela, will be a sight to behold.
The blending of the two art forms echoes a trend that brings together traditional and more contemporary practices and the new conversations that come as a result. The Royal Opera House’s rolling programme in the studio space offers interested parties just this kind of thing; circus performances and hip hop ballet collaborations are just some of the things recently shown there – so it’s likely 4×4 Ephemeral Architecture will follow in their success. (Words: Laura Thornley)
From 13th-15th January. For more info visit: www.roh.org.uk/productions/london-international-mime-festival-by-various