Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Stomp Makes for a Percussive, Infectious Audience Romp

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Stomp Makes for a Percussive, Infectious Audience Romp

Article excerpt

It's omnipresent.

It makes the sternum vibrate and the brain concuss. It commits

assault and battery on the eyes and ears.

It slams and shakes through Target and Coca-Cola commercials.

It bangs and clangs in the a.m. with Good Morning America , in

the afternoon with Oprah, in the evening with The Academy

Awards , late at night with Letterman and Leno, and with the

sold-out FCCJ Artist Series performances Wednesday and Thursday.

It's been nominated for Best Live Action Short for the 1996

Cannes Film Festival and the Academy Awards and won an Obie, an

Olivier Award and the Drama Desk Award for Unique Theatre


What started five years ago as a collaboration between Luke

Cresswell and Steve McNicholas -- who first worked together in

the British street band Pookiesnackenburger -- has evolved into

the theater/dance/percussion event known as Stomp.

Or STOMP, as the publicists like to style it.

For once, those capital letters seem appropriate.

If you've seen the show in New York or watched the cast on

television, you already know that Stomp is big and bodacious.

The cast members of this joyous giant's dance can make music

out of non-traditional instruments: garbage cans, hubcaps,

boots, brooms, matchbooks.

As Cresswell puts it, "We make a rhythm out of anything we can

get our hands on that makes a sound."

"Stomp," as Cresswell has written, "is the exploration of

rhythm in everyday things."

But even though watching the group find music in everyday

objects is an amazing experience, the show isn't all about


The theater, music and dance aspects are woven together

inextricably. Audience members find themselves wondering about

the cast members, "Are they dancers who've learned percussion or

percussionists who've learned to dance?"

Without saying a word, each cast member establishes his or her

own character and makes music, dances, acts and interacts with

the audience as that individual character.

And although the show is, of course, tightly choreographed and

rehearsed (some of those awards were for choreography, after

all), it doesn't feel that way. …

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