Burn the Floor - it's flirtatious foreplayJennifer de Klerk
Jennifer de Klerk: Dance becomes a courtship, a flirtatious foreplay, where gorgeous girls strut their stuff for gorgeous boys and every move is an invitation.
And the boys and girls are undoubtedly gorgeous – the girls with perfectly toned bodies draped in sequins and bare essentials, the boys showing their impressive six-packs through flimsy shirts or nothing at all.
It’s awesome eye candy and they know it; they are sultry, sexy, provocative, every move polished to perfection, the beat of the percussion pulsing like blood through your veins.
In short, Burn the Floor is hot and as the temperature rises in the second half, it gets even hotter.
The nine couples, all ballroom champions and it shows, hail from all over the world, including our own Keoikantse Motsepe who more than holds his own in both looks and ability.
In the first half we are given a quick historical tour, from a dreamy waltz through foxtrot, swing, jive, samba, rumba, cha cha – all styles your grandmother would recognise, but not in this form. Then we move on to things that swing, the Latin quarter with a wicked tango among others, and the scintillating coda, with a Proud Mary jive that rocks the auditorium.
Obviously the cast prefer the faster and more virtuoso styles which showcase their skills and timing. Two drum kits on stage keep the beat going and a couple of sultry singers – Jessice Lingotti and Peter Saul – add soul and words to the mix.
If you have not seen the show before – it was in Joburg last year – you will be stunned and deservedly so.
If you have, well, you might be a little disappointed. I missed the story flow, the light and shade, the emotion which made Burn the Floor 2011 so special. Perhaps there was more variety, or more acting, or simply more heart.
No matter, there is enough, and more than enough, to hold the senses here in the endless perambulations of the courtship dance. Girl flirts, invites, boy responds, boy is rejected, boy rejects, the girls gang up, the men face off … a matador sequence mesmerises with swirling capes to a pulsating paso doble rhythm.
In the end you’re exhausted just watching the energy pour off the stage, although the dancers hardly seem to gleam.
It’s an awesome spectacle, a dance show like no other. In short, it’s so hot, it sizzles. See it if you dare.
Burn the Floor, Ballroom Reinvented is directed and choreographed by Jason Gilkison. It is at the Joburg Theatre until August 19, then moves to Durban.
Jennifer de Klerk is editor of Artslink.co.za