The sometimes disturbing and often bizarre MightyMatPogo kicks off the last night of Resolution! 2009. To a live soundtrack of vocalist Mat Pogo’s explosive, rhythmic babble, a boy and girl cling together. As the couple writhe inseparably on the floor, another – conspicuously naked – girl pops unexpectedly out of a box to join them. MightyMatPogo is full of such striking moments: exaggerated, cartoonish antics, deafening soundscapes, entanglements that border on physical assault and wordless screams; but these add up to little more than 40 minutes of headache-inducing weirdness. “No matter how far [the performers] push themselves,” writes Mureddu in the programme note, “there’s always the risk of not succeeding.” She’s not wrong.
Another New Day In Between the Lines also opens with an arresting image – of five dancers standing nonchalantly on their heads. Tony Adigun’s street-influenced choreography is fresh and lively, slick and well-rehearsed, and also pleasingly playful: assisted by clever lighting, the dancers engage in a game of hide-and-seek with the audience, poking limbs into shafts of light and vanishing from spotlit boxes. If there’s any complaint here it’s that Another New Day… is all too brief: just as it builds to a physical crescendo of leaning, pushing and catching in a downstage corner, the piece blinks to a halt with the audience audibly wanting more.
Nine talented dancers put the “fab” into “fabulous” in Drew McOnie’s supersweet closing number. McOnie has performed with Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures since 2005, and it shows – set to a suite of Judy Garland showtunes, Be Mine is gloriously, unashamedly MGM-camp, with a delicacy and musical sensitivity that make this effervescent confection impossible to resist. Moments of poignancy and humour give life to the technical workouts; men in their underpants shave to the rhythm while women high-kick and sashay across the floor; and Fred’n’Ginger seem to possess the whole cast. Rose-tinted and sparkling like pink champagne, it’s the perfect season finale.