Specimens of Her
Jascha Boyce @ The Birdcage
7:15pm, Thu 14 Mar 2013
I rave about Gravity & Other Myths at every opportunity, and I’ve vowed to follow that group of performers on whatever artistic path they choose to take. So when I see that Jascha Boyce – the nimble diminutive flyer of the group – had her own solo show, I was there in a heartbeat.
The stage was simple: a series of jars and vases, all different sizes, lined up in order of height. Behind them, to the right, a folding screen, backlit for seductive shadow-work. The performance, too, was short and to-the-point: a little juggling, a little tumbling, some hoop work, and a little bit of contortion work… all performed with the skill that is synonymous with GoM, though there were a few stumbles with her hoop routines (then again, Jascha’s recovery always included an apologetic smile to the audience that was so lovely that it almost made me hope for another mistake).
In between these short physical pieces, Jascha would take little scraps of paper from within (or on) the containers, reading the provocative snippets of text that they contain; the containers acted as a progress bar to the performance, and there was a bit of tension as she approached the jar that held a mousetrap, proffering it her tongue… a smile, a wink, and she avoids the confrontation. And, curiously, the manner in which she shrunk into the largest of the containers caused me to flash back to Bonsai Kitten (a very early internet meme).
I can’t recall a single woman in the small audience that assembled for this performance of Specimens of Her; I do recall wondering if that was a little… well, creepy, what with Ms Boyce being such an adorably cute young creature. But she totally owns the stage, and – whilst Specimens didn’t completely engage me for the entire performance – it contained enough quirks and nuances to convince me that there’s Something Different in the mind that created it… and that, as always, makes me feel happy.
— Pete Muller (@festivalfreakAU) March 14, 2013