Dance | The Lock In
The Carriageworks Theatre
The Lock In is described as “the UK’s No.1 folk and hip hop dance extravaganza”, with a garish poster to match. Yet the show begins humbly with a young folk singer, Maz O’Connor, with her guitarist Matt. The blissful Rambling Free stands in stark contrast to any preconceptions of what the show may be like. It marks the beginning of the performance’s underlying message: you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.
Centered on a lock in at a pub, the show can only be described as a performance built on juxtapositions. Gradually, various groups of people introduce themselves and have ‘dance-offs’ with each other; the contrast between the old and the new is reflected in the dance styles (folk, tap and break-dancing), the singing (choral to beat boxing) and the age range of the performers. One wouldn’t think that such a diverse range of genres would fit together- but somehow it works.
The performance’s underlying message: you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.
Although hesitant and unsure about the performance at first, it certainly grows on you. The show is completely bizarre, but the talent exhibited is unquestionable; a female beat boxer being a particular highlight, who leaves you gaping in awe.
All of the characters are full of surprises, including ‘Jasmine’, the cross-dressing drummer, who prances around the stage waving a mop with curlers in her hair. Although admittedly not a show for everyone, no one can deny the amazing skill of the performers. And with such a vast age range of dancers, it is overwhelming to realize that so many young people are passionate about keeping up long held traditional dances that their ancestors would have also taken part in.
The Lock In is cultural entertainment at it’s finest- a highly enjoyable (yet very odd) show. If seeing a man wearing hi-tops and a snap back break into Morris dancing sounds like your cup of tea, then The Lock In is for you.