SUPERFAN: Nosedive (Barbican Centre, Pit)

Company of Nosedive

This vibrant show from Scotland-based new physical theatre group SUPERFAN has just taken up a short residence at the Barbican’s Pit. It proves to be an interesting commentary on the nature of childhood, time and space, hopes and dreams.

Three adults: one man, two women. Two children: a boy, a girl, both ten years old. With attempts to fall, float, fly and climb we are caught in a hour of circus lifts and acrobatics, of tumbling and fumbling, reaching and crawling, climbing, colliding and trampling.

The children are lifted on to shoulders, mimic the adults in their movements, tentatively explore their own routines. The adults pull at the faces of the children, almost digging into the elasticity which is hand in hand with an innocent view of the world.

There are three scenes, each telegraphed by a change of costume (and in one case by a dry ice machine which feels like a comment on Greta Thunberg’s engagement with climate change). We see movement, we have short sections of chat, and we have the opportunity to place any meaning we want to on the piece.

Company of Nosedive

Sadly, last night there were no programmes available to give us further insight. In the downloadable version online the founders of SUPERFAN (Ellie Dubois, Pete Lannon and Kim Donohoe) describe it thus:

We wanted to create a space to see things magnified – a place where all the performers have is each other, where we can see their different bodies and relationships in close-up. We are interested in the politics of how adults and children move together, and in the pressure we put on children to be the saviours of our future.

Ellie, Kim and Pete: SUPERFAN

The performers are JD Brousse, Michelle Ross, and Nikki Rummer (adults) and Albie Gaizely-Gardiner, Lachlan Payne (children); they devised Nosedive together, with additional input from Holly Middleton.

Nosedive will continue at the Barbican until 16 November. It is directed by Ellie Dubois and Pete Lannon and you can book at

Photo credits: Brian Hartley