Bartabas and Andrés Marín: Golgota review – a ceremony of flamenco horses

Sadler’s Wells, London
This beguiling new work by the equestrian-dance maverick is dense with religious imagery and finds a wordless connection between man and beast

During Easter week in southern Spain, whole towns and cities become saturated with religion. In Seville especially, the streets are thronged with penitentially robed, conical-hatted nazarenos, and ceremonial floats bearing candles and statues of the crucified Christ and the Virgin Mary. And it’s that concentration of theatre, ritual, worship and tradition that inspires the latest work from equestrian-dance maverick Bartabas.

Golgota is a very male production (the Virgin Mary is notably absent), with Bartabas joined on stage by flamenco dancer Andrés Marín, three sombre white-ruffed musicians (straight from El Greco), a dwarf, four horses and a donkey. There’s no clear enactment of the Easter story, although the work is dense with images: priests, Roman soldiers, crucifixes, candles and incense, and comes with the piercing, live accompaniment of a selection of sacred motets by Tomás Luis de Victoria. As Bartabas has said, he and Marín are like boys “locked in a church”, who play with the materials around them.

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Source: Guardian Dance News

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