“I would like to become a mother,” Renata Piotrowska-Auffret says at the start of The pure gold is seeping out of me. While infertility and social obstacles to motherhood are discussed increasingly openly in some countries, they remain taboo in Poland. The Warsaw-based dance-maker’s latest work comes from a place of justified anger at that situation, but allows it to overwhelm the movement.
Her personal story is woven into a series of others, told from a lectern. They are interspersed with excerpts from the pieces Piotrowska-Auffret was creating as she struggled. Contrast is clearly the aim, yet it enhances neither the text nor her past choreography.
Piotrowska-Auffret, who brings a loose, ragdoll-like quality to steps, is joined onstage by two other women. They do ultimately stage a memorable childbirth scene – all possessed grunting and writhing – but their manifesto lacks the choreographic raison d’être to truly resonate beyond its own birthplace.