Grappling for the Edge (2008)

Cadi McCarthy & Company

Dancers: Dean Cross, Chrissy Norford, David Mueller, Laura Boynes, Patrice Smith

After being awarded a two – week residency at Chez Bushwick, New York, Grappling for the Edge was developed, a work that follows individuals on their struggles to keep afloat in today’s society. With everyone living to the extreme of their finances, and the desperate need to own more, the work asks the questions -What is really important? What do we push to one side to keep up with the Jones? When does materialism, and the desire to be someone else reach breaking point? How far is really too far?

In today’s world we are bombarded with images about how we should want to live our lives? how hard we should work? what we should own? what is important? Do we really make our own decisions anymore or does society make them for us? When does this constant push to reach unrealistic goals lead to instability and eventual collapse. At what point did life become unbalanced, when did we lose our own perspective and how long can people endure these extreme lifestyles?

Where is your edge? How close are you to slipping off?

The work retains the lithe and sinuous originality of her earlier works, combined with a mischievous sense of humour and wry, ironic comment on young people’s struggle in a modern world, but Grappling for the Edge is a more mature work, more adventurous in its physical interpretation of McCarthy’s recurring theme of the struggle between expectation and emotional need, society’s pressure and personal relationships.

McCarthy’s art is to hold the moment in poetic dance, to capture the form and breathe life and meaning into gesture, every movement and every line and flow of the dancers movements.

The rapport is beautiful to watch in the dancer’ harmonious motion of thought and feeling, at times charged with pathos, at times comical, at times cheeky and satirical.

- Peter Wilkins, Canberra Times