Lady Magma, la vague hippie de Oona Doherty : TOUTE LA CULTURE

04 AVRIL 2019 | PAR AMELIE BLAUSTEIN NIDDAM

Event on the dance planet, the now famous Irish choreographer and dancer presented her latest creation at the CDC Atelier de Paris in collaboration with the Val de Marne dance biennale. Hypnotic. For a surprise it's a surprise. For us, Oona Doherty is the girl with the androgynous physique who fights in Lazarus and the Birds of Paradise, and who, silver chain around the neck, baggy and hair plated, enrage in Hard to be soft (which will be taken again in Strong Dance Time at the Théâtre de la Bastille from 8 to 12). At the Atelier de Paris, fuller than ever, Oona rose to prominence as the mistress of ceremonies. Jean wide, colorful bra, headband variegated in her hair, she is ultra girl. She puts us in condition before Lady Magma really starts. A long "inspiration", a long "expire" by the mouth and voila, all of us, gathered in community have produced "the sound of lady magma" that Oona defines us as "a gift for the soul". Then we enter. The room overflows. The audience is sitting on the stands and on the stage. We surround the dancers on the floor, or rather the carpet. A monumental Persian carpet totally baba-cool where are drawn curved lines. Aoife Mac Atamney, Louise Tanoto, Tilly Webber, Janie Doherty and Justine Cooper, five uninspired interpreters each go, led by their "Chi", to deploy a movement of crazy freedom. At the beginning, in body in smooth velvet and in bright colors, they are on the ground like newborns. The legs are stretched on arched feet, the neck is constrained. Yet no suffering here, rather an arrival to the world in the halo of orange-pink light of Ciaran Bagnall and Oona Doherty. Then the transition to verticality is done in a reference to all the hippie gatherings. The soundtrack is made of slow riffs that seem to have been composed in 69 at the same time as The Age of Aquarius. Lady Magma becomes a journey in time, completely addictive. Everything is invading us here. The halo light, the swirls more and more inhabited by the dancers and especially the connection between the five that goes beyond the choreographic field. The trance is totally seventies and makes us completely stoned.

Lady Magma, une féminité explosive

 Henri Guette from Transfuge Magazine le Mardi 30 Avril 2019

Lady magma, an explosive femininity
Invited to the Val de Marne dance Biennale, Oona Doherty presented to the CDCN Carolyn Carlson her latest creation Lady magma, a piece with seventies accents that celebrates the feminine body in the bend of trance. Jubilatory as well as liberating. 

Oona Doherty catches his audience before he even enters the Hall. She invites him to breathe, to stop for a moment and to give herself his hand. The dance as it is conceived is in direct connection with the spectators; Here they can sit in a semicircle around the stage and be closer to the performers. The warning also summarizes how the choreographer worked with her five dancers, friends to whom she proposed more than to participate in a show a real life project that stretches, in its ramifications, until the meeting with women in prison or locked up. One might as well talk about therapy as it is for the interpreters to free themselves from the weights that weigh on the body, constraints that hinder the breath. The threshold here has a double importance. Some gestures seem to have come from purification rituals and the circle formed by the dancers who give their hand and cling to each other call for a Sorority, a witch community. 

In the red-orange Penumbra of a carpet that seems to melt, the body twitted and the twisted face of the five dancers create a sensation of discomfort. The laughter close to tears evokes from the outset a crisis of hysteria in the most medical sense of the term. Studied by Charcot, then by Freud, hysteria is a neurosis where the psychic conflict is expressed in a bodily way, for example by contractures or paralysis. Women have historically been associated with these crises, fantarated as moments of possessions but in reality symptoms of a context of generalized oppression. The atmosphere is tense but the subject is not, despite the deliberately dated costumes to propose an archaeology of the bodies. Little by little the interpreters come up and gather in a round that testify to their constant attention to the other. They support each other and draw together lines and figures with very organic contours as many possible and psychedelic horizons.

The colors and lights, the flow reminds the flow of a magma lamp. The choreography plays on the succession of slow and fast movements to dilate time. Following the music of David Holmes, we let go to the Funk pulses and this primary temptation to beat the measure. The dancers themselves respond to the sounds in a great freedom of movement that touches the trance. It is surprising to breathe less regularly during jazz improvisations and their hieratic rhythm. The approach is in the first place sensitive and sensual as evidenced by the effects of soft materials, skin, velvet or carpet. The interpreters dance for a large part on the ground, semi-elongated or partly seated, in a very earthly commitment that holds self-affirmation. Oona Doherty first chose his dancers for their presences and energies and they radiate. Lady magma imposes beyond the obstacles of the outside a solar and overflowing femininity.