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Review of Pinocchio – Directed and choreographed by Jasmin Vardimon

Jasmin Vardimon Company present a unique adaptation of the all-time classic fairy-tale, The Adventures of Pinocchio. Originally conceived in 1883 Italy within a society who questioned the nature of education and class systems; ‘Could peasants be educated and grow up to become ‘real boys’?’, or was there no hope for children who were destined to become merely workforce ‘donkeys’.

Jasmin Vardimon is renowned for her daring, theatrical choreography and directorial style expressing her individual choreographic voice. Vardimon’s works are widely known for addressing concepts of human experience, social relevance, high-quality skill and technical performances.

Pinocchio is a full-scale production combining advanced technologies, innovative spoken text and physical theatre. The character of Pinocchio is performed by the astonishing and talented Maria Doulgeri who brings the story and stage to life through her effortless movement and emotional performance. Doulgeri graduated from the National School of Dance (Athens) and moved to London in 2012 to become a member of the Jasmin Vardimon Company. Doulgeri’s performance is faultless and comical, providing a magical immersive world within the production for both adults and children.

Guy Bar-Amotz worked in collaboration with Vardimon as a dramaturge on the production of the work, focusing on the moral structure of the fairy-tale and exposing the emotions of the plot; (curiosity, fear, loneliness), emotions Pinocchio has to experience to become a real human. Pinocchio explores the development of human emotion through the experiences of a wooden doll, an approach based on the original Carlo Collodi tale. Pinocchio’s consciousness is portrayed on stage through fluttering glow in the dark hands made up of performers as they move in time to Steven Glaser’s narration and storytelling, guiding the audience through this original portrayal.

Vardimon’s Pinocchio is pure magic from opening to end. The skill and performance of the dancers is breathtakingly stunning, each scene providing new illusive, unexpected moments within the fairy-tale surrounded by a superb innovative set design. A must-see performance for dance fanatics and a family feel good magical evening.

5 Star Rating

Review by Kasia Truefitt

Prior to its international tour in 2018, award-winning choreographer Jasmin Vardimon’s adaptation of the
classic fairy tale Pinocchio returns to Sadler’s Wells (October 2017). The critically acclaimed production,
which premiered at the London theatre last autumn and went on to complete two successful UK tours, goes
on to Blackpool’s Grand Theatre immediately after its run in the capital.

Pinocchio is based on the original book by Collodi and is performed by Jasmin Vardimon’s multi-talented
dancers. The theatrical dance work brings to life the famous marionette as he embarks on a fantastic
journey to become a human boy. Showcasing Vardimon’s uniquely theatrical choreographic and directorial
style, Pinocchio combines physical theatre, quirky characterisation, innovative technologies, text and dance
to examine the idea of what it means to be human.

With insightful humour, engaging drama and an acute observation of behaviour, the show takes audiences
on a wonderful journey of discovery through the parameters of this timeless and beloved fable.

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