Belfast Telegraph on Scratch

Cubist Love Story with a Brutal Twist

Grania McFadden, Belfast Telegraph, 1999

WHEN we look into someone’s eyes do we see: a) their soul b) your reflection c) on- ly what you choo se to see?

That’s the starting point of this short, intense performance from Romy Tennant and Spencer Hazel, set against a sound mix from DJ Scab.

Two people who’ve known each other for years, suddenly realise there’s a spark between them that’s just ignited. The pair—one who is chasing a dream,’ the other who’s running away from a nightmare — re-enact their courtship ritual, from boozy confrontation in the pub to the moment when they look deep into each other’s eyes.

But this isn’t a straight narrative, although much of what they say is witty and to the point.

The build-up to this one-night stand is more brutal and all-encompassing than mere words can describe. There’s a lot of robust dance, too — the sort that involves performers hurling themselves against the walls and floor — and some nifty camera work, uniting two people who are really very far apart.

Trevor Turnton’s simple design — a giant cube around and upon which the couple play their games — offers several corners around which these unlikely love- birds play hide and seek with each other and their emotions.

Tennant and Hazel give highly accomplished performances in a piece that occasionally seems a little over-indulgent. And as they return to their silent words, they do beg the question: what’s love got to do with it?