They run, fall, stand up, roll over themselves… Shay Kuebler from Canada at schrit_tmacher justDANCE! in Aachen


nightreview by Veronica Posth


Schrit_tmacher Festival brings on stage Shay Kuebler and his dancers in a versatile and energetic composition named Telemetry that took place in the Fabrik Stahlbau Strang. The title is connected to virtual information-transfer mechanism as radio, ultrasound, infrared system as telephone and computer networks. The canadian dancer and choreographer, born in 1984, began his artistic development at the age of 5 with dramatic arts at Stage Polaris Theatre Academy, and with martial arts in Shito_Ryu Karate. His style is eclectic with background in Hip Hop, Jazz, Tap, Contemporary and Neo-classical Ballet.

The piece starts with a tap dancer that all around the rounded stage moves appearing thoughtful and quite introverted. He seems moved by the tap shoes instead of by his own decisions of motions. This leads to think about the ‚passive‘, dependent state of non-stop wifi connected – generation and its consequences.
Telemetry has an immense potential and pros but is also highly determinant and conditioning for the humankind and its surrounding. The piece seems reflecting the complex nature of the transmissions and receptions of the contemporaneity.

The performance continues with dancers that invade the centre and animate the space with falls, drops, rounded movements and dynamic body intersections across the stage. The steps run faster as the beats increase tempo. Here once again the connection between the bodies as telemeter is strongly manifested with speed and appearing turmoil.

The solos are accurate and precise as they would describe the smooth harmony of circulation of data and information while the group formations are hectic, fast and furious generating a general chaos that accompanied by the sound of tap shoes, remembers the noise of an endless train in motion that could become metaphor of the constant frenetic contemporary telemetry.

Two dancers shake in the middle of the dais and those contorted movements are strong, clear, bodily out-loud. They make to think about an explosion of compressed stress, something felt but unexpressed, processed thoughts never outspoken or too many information to deal with.

The feet of the dancers move quickly dancing a merged cross-disciplinary of tap, hip hop and contemporary steps. They run, fall, stand up, roll over themselves and keep running from one side to the other of the podium that most of the time is lighted just with one central, hanging light that becomes object of theatrical effects. Visuals on the floor and spot lights all around the circle emphasize the actions and the body work, but the stage is generally dark and some rare flashy lights can be disturbing. The performers are athletic and it’s clear from their jumps and tenacious speed hold during the 60 minutes long performance. Moreover they are full of vim and vigour and accurate in their solos and duets; this is assumedly the reason why the audience responded truly enthusiastic and wholehearted.

The piece is generally lively, bouncy and vibrant but sometimes it seems repetitive, excessively hectic and some movements appear quite casual and rough in particular when they dance with different steps at the same time but maybe that is part of the conception.