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Red review at Dance Base, Edinburgh – ‘expressive and deeply personal’

Carl Knif in Red Carl Knif in Red. Photo: Maria Falconer
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The From Start To Finnish season, showcasing the most innovative new work from Finland is making its sixth appearance at the Edinburgh Fringe. This is the first year to include circus and dance performances, allowing choreographer Carl Knif to present his solo piece Red. Blurring the line between physical theatre and dance, Red explores the cause and effect of the decisions we make on a daily basis. It is an explicit and deeply personal collection of scenes that use repetition to establish patterns of behaviour. 

Knif’s body twists and turns, gathering momentum, powering important emotional turning points in an otherwise ordinary life such as independence from family, sexual awakening and first love. They may not always be hugely dramatic events but they ricochet through the dancers life to impact on his present. Red may be the symbol of danger, but it is also the symbol for courage and this is a major feature of the work.  

Bold, expressive moves are matched by an eclectic soundtrack and a lighting design incorporating a strobe that lends a kinematic effect to key routines. Despite this technical fusion the piece remains steadfastly human, and Knif’s translation life-changing episodes into movement and occasionally dialogue is profoundly moving.

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Expressive and deeply personal fusion of physical theatre and dance