Wednesday, June 5, 2013


Marnie Palomares - Miranda Wheen -Alison Plevey - Melanie Palomares

Presented by LIZ LEA & CO
National Library of Australia,
May 31st - June 1st 2013

Reviewed by Bill Stephens

Aviation may seem an unlikely source of dance inspiration but with “InFlight” choreographer Liz Lea has created an elegant, inventive, highly original and entertaining dance work with which to celebrate Australian aviation achievements. 

In the style of a dance-doco the first act depicts two sisters (Marnie and Melanie Palomares), first met performing a cute and clever burlesque fan-dance to “Red Red Robin”. Vintage archival images and sound, clever lighting and excellent period costuming combine to recreate a world fascinated by the exploits of aviators,  Amelia Earhart and Charles Kingsford Smith, and the sisters quickly become absorbed into the world of flying machines. A plane is built onstage, which eventually crashes, providing an affecting conclusion with the four dancers moving among the wreckage.

The abstract second act explores the world of birds. The four dancers wear gracefully draped, feathered costumes to execute an intriguing choreographic repertoire of stylised bird movements. Inhabiting a feathery environment designed by Naomi Ota and moving to an atmospheric soundscape, they strut, preen, quarrel and eventually unite in a beautifully realised finale.  Miranda Wheen, Alison Plevey, Marnie and Melanie Palomares each shine in individual solos, and dance superbly in the unison passages.  

Despite the theatrical limitations of the National Library lecture theatre, “InFlight” is a beautifully conceived and immaculately detailed dance work which constantly delights the eye, intrigues the mind and excites the imagination.
                    (An edited version of this review appears in CITY NEWS 5th June edition)