Compelling in its investigation of untruths, half-truths, white lies, omissions, and embellishments, WOULD I LIE TO YOU? left me with questions. What is a lie? Is something a lie if we lie only to ourselves? Is an incorrect assumption a lie? How often do I lie to myself?
The RealLivePeople performers ask these questions of the audience and themselves, using audience-submitted lies for improvisational skits and performing to audio interviews of cast members detailing their beliefs about, and instances of, lying. Gliding between others’ outstretched limbs, pausing in handstands and shoulder supports, the cast carves, darts, and slides through translucent white curtains. The dancing is often interrupted by a repeated trope: one dancer reads an audience-submitted lie aloud, while others enact the scenario in an improvisational structure that felt like a drama-class warm up—more play-acting (eliciting guffaws from the audience) than physical movement. Though often the text felt separate from the movement, an exception was a duet structure peppered between the more athletic sections: two dancers improvise movement while taking turns making statements about each other. Guessing at assumptions initiates changes in pathways: a correct guess—“Drew’s family is supportive of his dancing”—leads to a forward progression. An incorrect jab—a lie?— “Gina does not experience stress or anxiety in her daily life”—causes a regressing pathway. These moments, where the dancer spoken about considers the truthfulness of the statement, are the most human—most truthful—in the piece. [The Latvian Society] September 5-10, 2014; fringearts.com/would-i-lie-to-you.
Read the full review on thINKingDANCE.net.