REVIEW | You, Beauty

You, Beauty

Dancing in the Belly of a Cloud

Reviewed by Brendan Daynes

Chunky Move’s latest production, You, Beauty, transports audiences into an ethereal realm where reality bends and art transcends conventional boundaries. Set in Melbourne’s historic Immigration Museum’s Long Room, this immersive performance redefines the limits of contemporary dance and stagecraft, inviting viewers into an enigmatic world where time and space lose their rigidity.

Artistic Director Antony Hamilton’s visionary guidance seamlessly orchestrates a blend of dance, visual art, and spatial manipulation. Central to this performance is a colossal inflatable structure, an undulating form that evokes both the serenity of rolling clouds and the turmoil of tempestuous seas. This dynamic element transforms the venue into a living, breathing entity that both contains and propels the narrative forward.

The performance stars Samakshi Sidhu and Enzo Nazario, whose interactions with each other and the inflatable set are nothing short of mesmerising. Their choreography, oscillating between hard-edged precision and fluid grace, exemplifies the thematic interplay of opposing yet complementary forces. Andrew Treloar’s innovative costume design accentuates the dancers’ movements, elegantly mirroring the performance’s dualities and underscoring the dance’s shifting moods and energies.

From the outset, the inflatable’s presence is almost hypnotic. It stretches and compresses, swallowing the dancers and the audience into its surreal domain. As it morphs, it becomes a silent yet potent character in its own right. The lighting, designed by Hamilton and Ashley Buchanan, amplifies this effect, casting shadows and illuminating the space in ways that enhance the otherworldly atmosphere. The lighting transitions from soft, diffused glows to stark, dramatic contrasts, highlighting the performance’s thematic exploration of hard and soft elements.

Hamilton’s direction also pays homage to the history and future of dance, crafting a piece that feels timeless yet fresh. The performance is a love letter to the art form, celebrating its evolution while pushing its boundaries.

You, Beauty transcends traditional theatre boundaries, using the recurring motif of hard exteriors and soft interiors both in its set and emotional landscape. The dancers’ performances are filled with enchantment and dread, enhanced by an inflatable structure that distorts reality. Chunky Move’s production is a brilliant addition to Melbourne’s arts scene, showcasing innovative use of space, choreography, and design and is shining example of what can be achieved when creative vision and technical prowess converge, offering audiences an unforgettable journey into the heart of contemporary performance art.

You, Beauty is being performed at the Immigration Museum’s Long Room as part of RISING. For

more information or to book your tickets, visit

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