Dance review: Madame Freedom
Edinburgh International Festival Scotsman review: Madame Freedom, at the King’s Theatre, review by Kelly Apter
With its promise of live dance and digital technology, Madame Freedom was always going to challenge our sense of focus. Where do you look, when the action on stage seems just as important as that on screen?
At one point, Korean choreographer, director and performer Hyo Jin Kim is dancing, both on stage and on film, while the video is split between contemporary footage of diners in a restaurant and scenes from the 1957 film from which this show takes its name.
Hyo Jin Kim has a compelling stage presence, and during the opening sequence – devoid of all visual imagery – she holds our gaze just with her movement. Her choreography takes a strange turn mid-way, however, when she and male dancer Heung Nam Kim could be mistaken for Latin American round contestants on Strictly Come Dancing.
By contrast, the last ten minutes are stunning. She dances alone in a spotlight, while the most incredible images glide past her, projected on to three walls and the floor: squares, giant circles, enormous fish and, most dramatic of all, her own image duplicated over and over. Had the whole show been like this, it would have been a triumph.
Originally appeared in The Scotsman