Cut The Sky by Marrugeku, is easily definable as being crafted to the highest standard, in terms of production, visual imagery and choreography, these elements are almost beyond fault. However, it takes more than this triptych to create a truly memorable experience for the audience. With so many companies and individuals in recent times having turned to climatic disasters as concept for the creation of new create work, the subject matter is in desperate need of a company or individual to come along and approach with an entirely novel viewpoint. Otherwise the subject will continually fail in engaging with and inciting new conversations with the general public. Despite good intentions, and indeed the vital conversation that is communicated here in Cut The Sky, the thing that most dogged this performance, was an over riding sense of having “seen it all before”.
Cast give impressively, however lacked energy and a came across as a little tired resulting in a sense of disconnection, or disinterest that for an audience member is hard to shake. Transitions between individual solos and group choreography were at best jarring, and a greater sense of fluidity should be a constant thought when developing a performance as cross-disciplinary as Cut They Sky.
Not even the inclusion of two of Nick Caves most iconic songs, were able to insight anything deeper than a superficial hook, somehow Cut The Sky also missed an opportunity to provide an emotional connection through the inclusion of such popular iconography, something of which has been employed to great success by many others, a shame as Cut The Sky is a beautifully surrealist vision of a dystopian future, that however bleak as a reality, is one audiences are inherently drawn toward.
The projections that feature throughout this performance are to a degree, successful in painting a foretelling picture, helped by the underpinning music, though at times, some of the images- whole towns destroyed by natural disaster, are so re-cognisable as not being Australian, that it breaks from a visual rhythm, and detracts from the message as a whole.
Many of the production elements could also have been tightened, better use of North Melbourne Meat Market’s impressive size a simple remedy that could of given greater depth of vision, instead with the performance compacted into the furthest corner, the whole experience was a little cramped, and with so much visual noise, it was impossible to take in each element together as a whole. Closing scenes are undeniably impressive, when the sky is literally cut open, and the lithe choreography finds a physical crescendo; closing scenes delivered while water pours down and over each of the performers an image that remains post performance.