Tracing Paces at Grow Tottenham a Review by The Insanity in Dancing

Founded by Maisie Sadgrove, Tracing Paces hosts a series of not-for-profit immersive and community-based dance projects and workshops. Like many of the urban venues that Tracing Paces occupy, Grow Tottenham represents the decreasing number of public spaces available in cities. The event showcased live dance, an art installation and participatory activities within the setting of the community garden.

Sadgrove's site specific dance work is the result of four months of creation at Grow Tottenham. The work begins slowly with four dancers emerging in a clump, shuffling quickly, somewhere between zippy and jittery. The shuffling comes to an abrupt stop and the group disperse. The group draw together again, but this time they're slower, grounded and almost syrupy in their limbs. Arms thread outwards, like young shoots from the soil. Moving between bags of compost, planting borders and wooden crates, the work reflects the changing seasons in the garden.

Moments of surprise keep the piece moving forward. While a woman gestures sowing seeds, two others disappear behind her amongst planting troughs. Behind her, legs begin to slowly extend between the troughs. One, then two, then three, then four, rise and fall. The rising leg motif reappears later in the form of an extended arm with a broken wrist, resembling the rows of dead sunflowers in the garden. The quietness of the work is punctuated by the sound of chatter, traffic and birdsong; a perfect pedestrian soundtrack.

Sadgrove does well to bring people together in a forgotten public space. The work is peaceful and reflective, and serves to be a brilliant reminder of the quiet spaces that exist amongst the urban sprawl.

Maya Pindar

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