The Cove | Echo Echo Dance Theatre
The Lyric Theatre, Belfast • From 03 – 05 March 2017
Echo Echo embarks on all-Ireland tour of their dance-theatre production The Cove After several years focusing on establishing their own studio, performance venue, festival and participation programme in their home town of Derry, Echo Echo Dance Company are delighted to have embarked on a national tour of their beautiful and unusual coastal production of The Cove to venues all around Ireland. With the support of The Arts Council of Ireland and Northern Ireland’s North/South touring fund, the company will be bringing performances to Belfast’s Lyric Theatre on 03, 04 March at 8pm and 05 March at 2pm. The tour will also be taking the show to theatres in Derry, Galway, Thurles, Limerick and Dublin.
The piece was created as a response to a deep and intimate exploration of a hidden, remote inlet, on the North Donegal coast called Port-a-Doris. It evokes the very particular landscape of the wild Atlantic coast of Ireland… the rocky cliffs… the sea below… the big horizons… the endlessly changing weather. It resonates with the contrasting feelings of being alone in nature and sharing the experience with friends; the effort… the challenge… the pleasure… the fear and sense of mortality… the feeling of rock underneath fingertips… the cold of the water… the smell and taste of the sea air.
The Cove will appeal to anyone who enjoys the outdoors, nature and, particularly, the wild coastline of Ireland as well as those with an interest in dance, movement, theatre and art.
Reflecting on an earlier version of the work, Critic Michael Seaver, wrote in the Irish Theatre magazine that The Cove was:
“… told with fable-like simplicity, the dance is a multi-layered meditation on overcoming the constant force of gravity and the fear of falling in order to achieve the joyous freedom of the peak”
The Cove is performed with audience seated around a beautiful installation of large reflective structures, created by internationally renowned, Belfast based artist Dan Shipsides. The dancers sit, roll and climb on these sturdy blocks and move them around to transform the geography of the space to recall different natural coastal formations.
The Cove is directed and choreographed by Echo Echo artistic director Steve Batts and includes an original score by Christopher Norby who has also had commissions from the Ulster Orchestra and RTE Orchestra.
Echo Echo Artistic Director, Steve Batts says:
“The Cove has been maturing and developing since it was first presented in 2012 and it has been a huge pleasure to revisit it during our recent rehearsal period. The piece now has a more narrative form than when it was first presented but the core of the work in “embodying landscape”, the direct physical, sensory and emotional response to the natural world, has strengthened and deepened. From experience we know that people who love the outdoors, particularly the coast, really enjoy watching the piece. THE COVE is demanding to tour because the beautiful and powerful installation by Dan Shipsides is large, impressive, and both figuratively and literally weighty so we are very happy to have the support of both Arts Councils to allow the work to be seen more widely.”
Excerpts from The Cove can be viewed at:
A documentary about the origins of the work can be viewed at: