The Heart Of An Island Goddess or Moana?

Dancers of Movements Dance School in 'The Heart Of An Island Goddess'. Photo By Toby Ngomane/ Cue

The Heart Of An Island Goddess seemed to be a rip off of Disney’s Moana. The dance piece by Movements Dance School was average at best and lacked the charisma to elevate it and blow the audience away.

The show was not particularly impressive and could have in many regards been much better. Choreographer Cheryl Emmerson could have definitely pushed her dancers more and trained them a little longer before showing this work at #NAF18.

The piece featuring dancers from Movements Dance School was clearly an imitation of the 2016 Disney animation. This could have been excused had the work been more exciting and dynamic.

I had several problems with the piece that combined, ballet, modern dance, and tap. The music was uncomfortably loud. Trust me, I tried to ignore just how loud it was and enjoy the show but it demanded to be heard and heard it was.

Dancers of Movements Dance School in ‘The Heart Of An Island Goddess’. Photo By Toby Ngomane/ Cue

The music also felt as if it were randomly selected and the songs had very little significance to one another. It was almost like a rehearsal studio playlist. This gave the piece an unintentionally disjointed rhythm.

The dancers weren’t terrible, but they weren’t remarkable either. They were evidently still students, but they did not move past that or, for the sake of this production, carry themselves like professional performers. Some dancers also seemed to be tired from the beginning of the work, not lifting their feet or turning out. They were clearly physically under prepared for what was happening on stage.

The production felt more like an end of year showcase, rather than a fest production. In some pieces it felt as though they were still rehearsing. I found that in many cases the choreography was too simple and fell flat, and this, in many ways let the dancers down because it was not challenging enough.

Dancers of Movements Dance School in ‘The Heart Of An Island Goddess’. Photo By Toby Ngomane/ Cue

However, all was not bad. The costumes were well designed and beautifully conveyed the themes of the different dances. The tap section was also particularly exciting and was one of the few times I was engaged with the work on stage.

It is also worth noting that the ballet routine was beautifully executed and the dancers displayed a great deal of potential. Overall the work was not the most exciting piece of dance but it was not bad either.

Watch the last run of The Heart Of An Island Goddess on 6 July at 18:00 at Glennie Hall. 

By Toby Ngomane