Lîla Dance: Fault Lines

The Place, London
April 20, 2024

Let’s say this up front. Fault Lines by Bournemouth-based Lîla Dance is one of the most evocative pieces of dance theatre I have seen for quite a while. It works on all levels and achieves everything it sets out to do.

Fault Lines writer Nick Walker, who was behind the award winning BBC drama Annika, intended the piece to challenge and empower people to make environmental changes now. That he achieves his aim is unquestionable.

Choreographed and directed by Abi Mortimer and Carrie Whitaker. Fault Lines tells the story of living in a total environmental catastrophe brought about by climate change. It works backwards from an extinction event in 2050, with temperatures of over 50 degrees Celsius, to today.

The dancers (Joe Darby, Amy Morvell, Luke Brown, Yanki Yau, Coralie Calfond and Ivan Merino Gaspar) are all exceptionally talented. They dance with technical skill, grace and passion, and imbue the choreography with an intensity of emotion that stays with you.

The sixty minutes of dance theatre is never repetitive for a moment, which alone makes Fault Lines outstanding.

The set is created by the lighting (Natalie Rowland) and simple, but powerful, digital imagery (Zach Walker). The costumes are effective in lending the dancers the feel and appearance of environmental refugees.

Lîla Dance only gave two performances at The Place, but Fault Lines continues on tour, including to the Brighton Festival in mid-May. If it comes your way, I urge you to make every effort to see it. It is one not to be missed.