We don’t have a ballet company here in Manchester, but the city increasingly feels like a destination for dance – in no small part thanks to HOME, who have recently hosted shows by Boy Blue and Sol Picó. Now we’re being treated to Grand Finale from Brighton’s Hofesh Shechter Company.
Grand Finale, which premiered in June, depicts a world in free-fall, where society is collapsing in on itself towards an inescapable event horizon. Yes, this is bleak stuff, but choreographer Shechter finds a black humour in all of this, counterpointing the fatal with the funny.
Shechter is a distinctive voice in the world of dance. His productions make use of amazing – and very loud – soundscapes, ones that make you feel the music in your body as much as hear it through your ears; a sonic assault that connects you directly with the movement of the dancers.
As for the choreography, Shechter’s performers often look as though they are possessed by an alien force, one that is not necessarily benign. Their body’s twitch and jerk, their faces a blank mask. You feel that if you look close enough you might even be able to see the strings that are pulling them in such unworldly ways.
Anarchic, alien and awesome, Grand Finale is a dance piece more monumental than almost anything else out there.