Composer and Director: Falk Hübner
Performer: Maarten Zaagman
Reviewer: Glen Pearce
Years ago Top Of The Pops became notorious for bands, increasingly obviously, miming along to songs. As you head into I Will Carry You Over Hard Times, Falk Hübner & Maarten Zaagman’s contribution to Brighton Fringe’s Dutch Season, it is a thought that is hard to excise from your head.
It proves to be an unfair comparison, however. While Zaagman may mime Hübner’s musical work, it transcends mime and becomes something much richer.
Across half and hour and with nothing more than a handful of mallets, bow and percussion, Zaagman conjures up an entire orchestra. So vivid is his ‘playing’ that we not only hear the notes but can visualise the actual instruments. It may be, arguably, a music performance but it is also a tour-de-force piece of physicality with performer delivering the richest of detail in the tiniest of movements or the most energetic of crescendos.
Renowned percussionist, Dame Evelyn Glennie has often explained how as a profoundly deaf performer she feels the vibration in her instruments to guide her and that’s what we witness here, movement in performer feeling the effort needed to create just the right note. As the tempo and crescendo build so does the tension, performer and audience united in sound and emotion.
There may be no actual instruments here but Hübner and Zaagman are maestros worthy of any of the world’s great orchestras.
Runs until 21 May 2017
www.brightonfringe.org | @brightonfringe
The Reviews Hub is proud to sponsor the Literature & Spoken Work section of Brighton Fringe 2017 as well as being an official Reviews Partner, offering in-depth coverage of the festival.