Whilst the amazing promotional photo for Dispersions perhaps pays homage to the
rambunctious clans of Scotland immortalised through Mel Gibson’s movie “Braveheart”,
NICA’s latest ensemble performance explores modern-day notions of who and what we are.
Have we secretly maintained our tribal roots embedded with a them-and-us mentality or
have we been able to transcend tribalism to emerge as a truly globalised society where
individuals are recognised for their own unique worth?
Whilst any ensemble piece relies on the individual skills of its members, the performance of
individuals must meld to offer the audience a cohesive experience. Wrestling for a spot on
the metal lattice work, competing for juggling pins, jostling to show off your skills, and
patriotic flag waving are juxtaposed with the grace and beauty of aerial acrobatics, reflecting
the reality of modern society where we continue to come to terms with the conflict between
our uniqueness and the imperative to be members of a community.
Dispersions challenges us to reconsider the concept “Neotribalism” that suggests that we
have evolved to live in a tribal society and thus will naturally re-form into new social
networks. In doing so, the show combines the “uniqueness” of individual performance and
the synergies of teamwork with the improvised live music themed by Dr Jenny Game-Lopata
an expert in this creative field.
A very brave undertaking indeed! One which is steered capably by Co-Directors Zebastian
Hunter and Meredith Kitchen, and undoubtedly reflects the bold approach taken by NICA
staff with their students. Audiences can only anticipate what these talented 2nd year
students can do in their final year ensemble performance taking the circus arts to its whirling,
spinning, flipping and contorting heights.