(Image supplied Broken Rhythms Dance Company)

Chairo: Scurro brings film noir alive in dance

Broken Rhythms dance company makes music visible

Words by Tim Collins

One of the most memorable features of classic film noir is the music.

The haunting, jazzy strains with sombre, mysterious and sometimes vaguely sinister tones had a way of worming themselves into one’s soul and were the perfect backdrop for the cynical heroes, stark lighting and dark plotlines of the film noir genre.

The music and the feelings film noir engendered have now arrived in Victoria in the form of a new dance production by the Broken Rhythms Dance Company entitled Chiaro:Scurro.

The production will be happening on April 7 and 8 at Metro Studio Theatre (1411 Quadra) and promises to be an amazing reimagining of a bygone film style that was characterized by shadows, fog, feelings of paranoia, betrayal and outmatched antiheroes.

Dyana Sonik-Henderson, the artistic director of the Broken Rhythms Dance Company, has developed a style of dance for the company that combines contemporary and jazz dance with bluesy undertones that are unique to Broken Rhythms. That style, rhythmical contemporary, is ideally suited to the current production.

“Some people may not recognize or be able to place the music itself, but when the show is over, if they don’t, they’ll be trying to find out what it is,” Sonik-Henderson said.

“It has a rhythm that makes people want to move, even while sitting in their seats.”

The actual music was inspired by the scores of The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920), Metropolis (1927), Double Indemnity (1944) and Sunset Blvd. (1950).

“I took that music and added my own twist to the scores and the result is quite haunting,” Sonik-Henderson said.

Broken Rhythms is an independent, professional dance company that has toured across Canada. Their reviews have characterized the group as ‘genius’, ‘stunning’, and ‘captivating’.

The company’s latest production confirms the definition of dance as “music made visible”.

Tickets are $35 and are available at https://brokenrhythmsvictoria.com/.