12 THE LIST 19 Feb—4 Mar 2004

Choosing my religion: Michael Clark (above) and cast perform in Oh My Goddess

MICHAEL CLARK was the most outrageously talented dancer of the 19808, but after a decade marred by injury and addiction he went home to his mum. His latest performance is a triumphant return to form. Words: Donald Hutera

y new work is quite exposing.’ Michael Clark latrghs. 'But not in the old sense.‘ llis remark is a reference to the outrageous dances. chock—a-block with bum-baring. dildo-wielding costumes and a clever. in-yer-face energy that propelled (‘lark to a notoriety that reached far beyond the boundaries of contemporary dance. l‘ew have shaken up an often staid. intimidating art form like (‘lark did. For starters this ballet- trained Aberdonian iconoclast moved. and looked. like a decadent angel. Working with the likes of the outrageous designer Leigh Bowery and legendary post—punk hand the Fall. (‘lark established himself as one of the delining cultural entities of the 1980s. In its heyday his company drew an audience eager to experience the brand of barrier-breaking entertainment he dished up.

In the l‘)‘)()s (‘lark’s brilliance didn‘t dim so much as reveal itself intermittently. .lIm/cnr .llu.vterpr'er‘c (aka Mnmrm . . . ) and () rank among that decade‘s most memorable dance performances. Afterwards. to all intents and purposes. Clark dropped off the creative face of the earth. Much of the period between IOU—l and his public resurfacing. four years later. was spent in the company of his loving rrrurn. How else for a good lad to recuperate from injury. addiction and confused ego than by going back to his roots in north eastern Scotland'.’

I spoke to the erstwhile errfant terrible in mid—February. dtrring the first of three weeks of rehearsal prior to his forthcoming (ilas‘gow gig. (‘lark was upbeat about his current choreographic investigations. 'I know what my goals are. There's more than enough that I want to take further. sections |l7 altogether] of