Director | Laura Murphy Rehearsal Director | Siobhán Ní Dhuinnín Performers | Siobhán Ní Dhuinnín, Marion Cronin, Catherine Young, Justine Cooper, Isabella Oberlander, Magda Hylak, Sarah Ryan, Emily Kilkenny-Roddy, Lucia Kickham. Producer | Kristyn Fontanella in association with Once Off Productions Outside Eye | Colin Dunne, Mary Nunan, Matteo Farrigon
Abacus is a contemporary dance performance for 9 women and 18 buckets. The performers take the buckets through a sequence of routines that echo the experience of work. Audiences experience the brash sound and energy of Abacus as the nine dancers lift and swing, twirl and clash the buckets to the beat of an industrial drum.
Abacus examines our relationship with work and routine, the rhythms we experience in daily life. It looks at the antithesis of conformity and freedom, of togetherness and individualism. The themes are universal yet the origins of the work are based on dairy farming in Ireland - the rhythms of milking cows twice per day; the sometimes mundane and sometimes relaxing rhythm of the milking parlour; the rhythms we adhere to daily because of what life demands.
The image of the 'farm/milk bucket' is Irish yet it is universal in its appearance. Abacus gives a nod to our agricultural heritage in a contemporary setting. It acknowledges the industrial nature of our world - the clashing and banging of aluminium, and the humanity and femininity required to 'keep the ball rolling'.
Abacus is a hypnotic journey across the factory floor. It makes a spectacle of the mundane. Choreographer Laura Murphy hears music where others hear noise, and finds humanity in mass production.