REVIEW: Fagin’s Twist by Avant Garde Dance

REVIEW: Fagin's Twist by Avant Garde Dance

Most of us know the Dickens classic Oliver Twist, the boy who wanted more. Avant Garde Dance have given the classic a twist of their own as they take and  their contemporary dance Fagin’s twist. Our own dance lover Lilith Hunt-Sheppard went to Birmingham’s Hippodrome theatre to see the show on the first of it’s two night in the city.

The performance of Fagin’s Twist is inspired by the classic Oliver twist with only a few of the main characters.  Oliver, Fagin, Bill, Nancy and Artful Dodger are the focus in the Avant Garde Dance production, with the company delving deeper into fabricated past. Focusing on how Fagin came to having his own gang of little thieving apprentices it starts from his and Bill’s escape from a work house. Choreographed by Tony Adigun he takes you on their journey filled with hopes, dreams, loyalty and jealousy.

The dancing is powerful and at points almost tribal as the cast use the detachable, three piece set easliy to change the scene. At times looking so effortless, there is no narrative needed to tell the story. Although Artful Dodger, played by Aaron Nuttel, sets the mood for the show. Favorites for us were Fagin, played by Joshua James Smith, Oliver played by Jemima Brown and Bill Sykes played by Dani Harris-Walters with his expressive and emotional interpretation behind the moody character we all know.

Supported by great music that is predominantly heavy with orchestral strings, there are points where heavy percussion  are used and even infused with grime to really narrate a dark scene in the story. Written by Maxwell Golden the narrative is clear and suitable for all and the dancers are all fantastic, filled with versatility and passion.

As a different take on a classic this certainly pushes the boundaries and although contemporary dance may now be for everyone. Tony Adigun has done a fantastic job in creative this alternative tale.

Fagin’s Twist is also showing tonight, October 25th, at Nottingham lakeside Arts.

For more about Avant Garde Dance, Visit their website