Oona Doherty’s Hope Hunt at DanceLive Aberdeen

Hope Hunt and the Ascension into Lazarus

Oona Doherty

The performance may be six years old already, but the malaise of malehood that it so viscerally depicts, persists. Hope Hunt is a punch in the gut. But not only. It also has us twitching with unsure laughter and, at times, tightly holding back a tear. But there is nothing sentimental about the work, nor misty about the prodigious performance presence and technique of Sandrine Lescourant aka Mufasa. Her polyglot, guttural utterances, her bounds and leaps, souped-up strutting, chin jutting, winking, shoulder shrugging, are all fast and furiously intertwined into a matted but masterfully deconstructed (or ‘fucked up’ as Doherty once put it) personality on a brink.

Until that is, she sheds her tracksuit armour. Foetal on the floor, now in white, she rises up; Lazarus living once more. Doherty’s art is to draw us, both emotionally and physically, into the paradox of fear and hope that Lescourant’s performance incarnates.

Oonagh Duckworth