The war scene that follows draws on the ‘War’ section of Rudolf Laban’s suite Green Clowns, choreographed for his Kammertanz group in 1928. It evokes the ever-present spectre of WW1 slaughter and anticipates the breakdown of political civility in the 1930s with the emergence of Nazism and the almost inevitable WW2.
Choreographed with simple repetitive structures between assailants, the scene escalates from moderately aggressive gestures to pugnacious attacks, lifts and athletic thrusts. The material is organized in a canon in time and space as more dancers join the affray until the space is filled with belligerence.
The sound of the performers’ aggression, their shouts and cries, is drowned by the trumpeting of the brass and rattle of the percussion, with a cacophony that spurs on the dancers as their velocity and violence escalate.
At a crisis point one performer cries out for it to cease echoed from all corners of the space. The onslaught is over.