Harrogate Theatre's education department in association with the Harrogate Advertiser first launched the Young Reviewers Scheme in 2102 with the aim of mentoring the best writing talent from the Harrogate district's secondary schools in the art of reviewing.
The latest round of students to take part were given the task of reviewing a rumbutious piece of dance theatre in the initmate studio upstairs in Harrogate Theatre.
The winning review below was written by Elizabeth Gill of Harrogate Ladies College.
412 Dance Theatre presents Night + Daze, Harrogate Theatre
This January the audience at Harrogate Theatre allowed the charismatic Philip Stokes to take them on a journey to the ‘paradise’ that is your typical night club on a Friday night. However this was not a typical Friday night, and Sheffy is not your typical Northern ‘lad’. While downing the necessary beer before embarking on the perilous expedition to the club, he spots the ‘angel’ that is Ella Daley in all her All Saints glory.
Sheffy’s adventure describes a familiar freedom given in the mundane life of an office worker when allowed to shake off the woes of working life and enter the ‘next life’ for a night.
This is done with poetic word and movement to convey the plight of the stereotypical youth of today.
Daley embodies the various characters powerfully, using physical expression to bring Stokes’ words to life, along to the strong club beats.
The realistic imagery, and crude but accurate language, tells it straight with no hesitation making this animated story both highly amusing and relatable.
The use of club music and fluorescent lighting sets the scene for a story about normal people who seek an escape from everyday life, whether that is through drugs, revelry or dancing in the club.
This is very much, however, the story of a working class youth who resents the pressure of the establishment and all it imposes on young people.
The almost politically aggressive angle on the government’s relationship with the ordinary man takes a sharp turn from the hilarity of Sheffy’s Friday night antics.
Nevertheless this is a powerful piece of physical theatre put to meaningful philosophical quotations and hilarious mockery of colleagues, mates and fit girls.
This makes Night + Daze a must see production for youth and older.
Review by Elizabeth Gill