SHIFT / Barely Methodical Troupe

Photography by Chris Nash 

A rubber band has limits for elasticity which, when exceeded, shatter into a thousand pieces. Within the first five minutes of the performance, I was convinced that would be the inevitable outcome but oh, how wrong I was.

There were moments, pure heart-in-your-mouth moments, where the audience visibly shifted in their seats, as the performers flew, seemingly unstoppably towards the edges of the stage, only to be halted by the blue rubber bands around their bodies, counterbalanced perfectly by their co-performers. For every action, there really was an equal and opposite reaction, and it was quite simply breathtaking.

There were feats of sheer strength and balance, each of the performers using their statures and unique skill sets in very particular ways. If ever you needed a reminder of how important core strength and trust are, this show more than provides one. Talking of balance, I'm fully considering setting up a tightrope walk situation in my garden; inspired really doesn't even begin to cut it.

I had cold, sweaty palms throughout the show, and couldn't bring myself to look away, such was the intensity. I walked out of the Adnams Spiegeltent, feeling completely astounded by the fluidity and ease with which every individual on that stage moved. Years of practice I'm sure, but the result was effortless. 

And yet to my surprise, amongst the suspense filled silence, there were moments of laughter as the troupe quipped and interacted with the audience. From someone who wasn't sure what to expect from a group calling themselves the Barely Methodical Troupe, I was completely bowled over and cannot recommend them enough. Now firmly on my radar, they should most definitely find their way onto yours too. 

If gravity-defying acrobatics and unforgettable displays of modern circus are your thing, that is... 

(I was very kindly gifted tickets for the event in return for review. My opinion remains entirely honest and unbiased as per usual, however.) 

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