Babel is the third installment of the biblical stories created by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoi, the previous two being ‘Foi’ and ‘Myth’. Cherkaoi created them with help from his co-choreographer Damien Jalet. Babel came to Sadlers Wells in May 2010. The word Babel derives from a biblical story ‘The Tower of Babel’. The dictionary describes it as ‘a tower built in an attempt to reach heaven, which God frustrated by confusing the languages of its builders so that they could not understand one another (Genesis 11:1–9)’. Within this essay I will discuss the piece in five main sections; the dancers, the intent, the set, the overall feel and the supporting evidence. The Dancers
I feel the choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, obtained his dancers in a very true way. He chose dancers that were removed from their native towns, making it true to the biblical story as each were not comfortable with the English language and culture. Taking influences from all cultures and mixing them together, proving that even though they didn’t share the same language they were capable of coming together and working in unison. Another method of his choosing that I found interesting was that he never auditioned dancers, he kept it very personal by employing friends of friends, which enforces a personalisation to the piece, as they were true people who were hand picked, as opposed to technique dancers dancing choreography. The Intent
The intent was clear from the beginning and I feel the piece was too long, revisiting the same idea that we had already established at the very start. The piece was about communication on different levels, it showed this by having a community of culture on stage ranging from the ancient (a motherly Indian woman) to the futuristic (a dominatrix robot doll), this was emphasised on stage when they were separated in different boxes. I enjoyed how Cherkaoui showed how both extremities (the ancient and futuristic) came together, proving we still...
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