Why wait for what, for wait for when is a hard title to understand, but it has a certain poetry. That’s apt for Toby Fitzgibbons and Matthew Robinson’s mystifying duet, which hints at a story – there’s a pile of clothes, a broken billboard sign, an image of a mill silhouetted against sunlit clouds – but works better through mood, not meaning. There’s a lonesome-cowboy feel to the piece, the men synching into loose line-dancing, or joshing with casual high-fives and shoot-from-the-hips hands. There are also melancholy moments: Fitzgibbons taking off into a disquieting solo of sidewinder twists and lizard crawls; the pair playing at falling down dead. Both are fine dancers, the choreography is well crafted and the music (Lynyrd Skynyrd, Tom Waits and others) casts a captivating spell. All it needs is more narrative coherence. Or less narrative.
Daniel Walters’ BooJack is more straightforward: it’s about newspapers. Two women read tabloids while a third emerges from a paper pile with a concertina of newsprint unspooling from her mouth. The imagery is striking, but the piece doesn’t get into gear until the women start floundering in paper flotsam. One dons a head of rumpled pages, like a monster from the deep; another is suffocated by sheets clamped over her face. The choreography could be better honed, but its mix of long flailing hair and newspaper neuroses did make me think of Rebekah Brooks. Which was creepy.
The B-Sides is sharp, smart entertainment. Riffing on the rhythms of Jamaican music, choreographer Shelley Maxwell melds contemporary dance technique with the snap and reverb of a reggae offbeat, the down-and-dirty thump of a bassline and the show-off brio of rap – like patois, in dance form. Two women shake their hips as expressively as if they were wagging tongues. There are strutty chicken-walks, smutty boob-and-butt rolls, and plenty of attitude. All six dancers are great, but special mention goes to the superlative Theo Lowe, and his pelvis.