Breakin’ Convention: The Jazz re:freshed Sonic Orchestra at Sadler’s Wells Digital Stage
Jonzi D celebrates fifteen years of Breakin’ Convention with live music, dance, poetry, beatboxing and even some freestyling in a show that transforms the Sadler’s Wells stage into an exhilarating space for the reclaiming of theatre as present, alive, interactive and honest. In this impressive display of talent, skill and cool, live music by the ensemble The Jazz re:freshed Sonic Orchestra engages in animated dialogue with the speaking body.
Internationally acclaimed artists, including The Locksmiths, The Ruggeds, Mufasa & Ayanna, Boy Blue, and Tanaya “Ice” Martin, explore different dimensions in an improvisational and immersive experience that is a tribute to the transcendence of jazz at its best. The profundity of material for thought available in this hour-long show is an experience very much like reading the vibrations to Thelonious Monk’s dream, which not only teaches about the subconscious but does so from outer space. The opaque lighting heightens this effect, allowing viewers to enter into the dream – one not of perfection, but of various elements simultaneously moving together to create a perfect symphony.
The bridge that is the body goes beyond merely establishing a link with the music. Indeed, it commands the music as the tree commands the dance of the wind. The Ruggeds, for example, show how intricately music and dance are connected by way of movement that directs the notes of the piano or saxophone, which have already understood the curving of the back, the sliding across the stage, or the tapping of the toes.
Breakin’ Convention unites poetry and jazz as ancient lovers on a dancefloor. Meanwhile, Jonzi D asks, “And you wonder why hip-hop is attracting the youth.” A wonder indeed, when it takes hip-hop and the youth to take theatre away from bourgeois constructs of ordered convention to the open arena of pulsating and highly energised realness.
Breakin’ Convention: The Jazz re:freshed Sonic Orchestra is available to view on Sadler’s Wells’ Facebook page from 1st May until 8th May 2020. For further information visit Breakin’ Convention’s website here.