Ketzal, Aurora Nova <!-- none onestar twostar threestar fourstar fivestar -->

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The Independent Culture

Sometimes Ketzal looks like Hogarth's painting of a madhouse, with gaunt, shaven-headed people twitching and shrieking. The black plastic rubbish-bags bring us up to date, while the various codpieces add a touch of surrealism.

This is the latest show by Fringe favourites Derevo, an award-winning troupe from St Petersburg. They use dance and mime to create strange images, sometimes with great skill, usually with chilly detachment.

Ketzal, which means "bird" in the Nagua language, starts with Mexican roots but soon wanders into deliberate incoherence. The dancers writhe and flinch, cover themselves with feathers or plastic, fall together in a wriggling heap of bare flesh. One man has a beak moulded to his upper and lower jaws; another has a codpiece shaped like a forearm, its modelling so persuasive that I looked to see if another dancer had provided the extra limb.

Derevo can cling strangely together, different bodies becoming a single creature. A man crawls, a woman sitting on his hips, the two of them forming a lizard.

It's a reminder of the troupe's talent, but by then it's hard to care. Ketzal is 70 minutes long, and its stage pictures get lost in the acres of gibbering.

To 28 August, except 22 (0131-558 3853)

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