FRINGEWORLD: Dark Matter (4 stars)

Review by Laura Money

Picture a Venn Diagram with one circle containing Cirque du Soleil, one containing your 90s calisthenics class, and the other the movie Eyes Wide Shut; and where they intersect you’ll find Dark Matter. Circus has obviously evolved into this sensual, dramatic, and tense phenomenon.

The troupe consist of about 8 – 10 acrobats, and a violin player. They slink onto the stage in a liquid motion, bodies rolling over bodies like water over stones – it’s a beautifully visual show. The first sequence consists of two strong men on ropes, slipping in and out of each other’s negative space in an aerial ballet that is simply stunning. Out of the haze, they twist and weave. The audience is stunned into silence. There is a smattering of applause here and there, but largely there are gasps of admiration.

Stunning juggling with glowing balls that light up the pitch dark tent, amazing feats of strength and acrobatics, aerial routines that defy gravity – including nets, silks, perches and poles – Dark Matter always keeps you guessing. There are some pretty intense moments – Egyptian style masked acrobats performing a sombre and intense routine that causes many in the audience to sweat and gulp in deliciously tingling fear.

Dark Matter’s slick and sensual costumes reveal every muscle of the highly athletic crew, the sumptuous reds and dark wood of the West Australian Spiegeltent, intense Bjork-style soundtrack complete with seat vibrating bass, all culminate to produce a unique aesthetic that will keep you wanting more. It may even inspire you to find your nearest playground and whirl around on the monkey bars!

When: 27th January – 1st February 2016 (10pm)

Where: West Australian Speigeltent, Pleasure Garden

Tickets: From $25

Info: Duration 60mins, Suitable 15+