First night – South Devon College 7.30pm Thursday 12th November
The space is stark and simple – two chairs, a trapeze-like pole hanging horizontally, a tall wardrobe screen and rolled up at the back of the stage, a huge white sheet. This show, conceived by writer and activist Natalie McGrath, has been affected by a wide team of artists but tonight, bathed in pools of light, it is performers Belinda Chapman and Michelle Ridings who inhabit the stories of two women, trapped in a dangerous, forbidden love.
Kris Jager’s haunting soundscape punctuates the action continually transposing us to a new place. The two women move lightly and with precision. Poised and alert they occupy a state of readiness; attentive to the pending trouble from ‘outside’. Their clandestine devotion detonates through fragments of speech, physical struggles and an unraveling seduction.
We’ll meet in Moscow is a retort to draconian legislation in Moscow and elsewhere, and to any endeavour to eradicate same sex love.
Belinda and Michelle move inside the language of the text, the projections and the great white sheet which takes on a life as it is playfully wielded one moment adding clarity and the next heightening emotions between the women or physically subsuming them. Jane Mason’s choreography draws sensitively on a tender love story: the anticipation, the falling, the laughing, the losing control.
We’ll meet in Moscow is not saturated in despair but McGrath’s hard hitting text takes us to a dark place where ‘hate crime’ leaves people terrified and paranoid. The performers bring lightness through the love, which is beautifully portrayed. And here is the hope.
Catch this show on Monday 16th November at 8pm at Exeter Phoenix