CATHEDRALS are all about a majestic grey gothic elegance not generally the kind of place you'd expect to watch colourful contemporary dance. But mix it up and suspend the usual boundaries of stage and theatre, and the result can be refreshing, quite inv

CATHEDRALS are all about a majestic grey gothic elegance - not generally the kind of place you'd expect to watch colourful contemporary dance.But mix it up and suspend the usual boundaries of stage and theatre, and the result can be refreshing, quite invigorating. Mid-way through the first part of a two-part tour of 17 UK cathedrals, dance company Ascendance Rep energised the ancient nave-turned-stage at St Peter's, Exeter, at the weekend.The Leeds-based dance company's performance of Standing Stones was perfectly at home among the yawning archways, toothy gargoyles and stained glass windows that, even on a grey and frankly miserable midsummer Saturday afternoon, still somehow radiated their usual kaleidoscopic brilliance. A point not missed in this beautifully choreographed piece.Four dancers, each simply dressed in different coloured outfits, combined and contrasted to create their own windows to four movements of Mozart's Clarinet Quintet K581, performed by members of the Cornish Sinfonia.They interacted with their new-found space in a gentle symphony inspired by its surroundings - and often with a wonderfully cheeky humour.It's fun, fluid stuff and gives the audience a great new perspective on a magnificent building.There's plenty of interaction with the audience and at one stage, dancers blur the borders between interval and performance by taking the act in and among the rows of surprised spectators.Next stop on the tour is Bristol Cathedral today (Thursday), followed by Carlisle Cathedral this Saturday (July 12).The tour picks up again in October, with cathedrals in Wells, Newport, Guildford, Newcastle, Derby, Truro and Tewksbury just some of the destinations.For more information and tour dates, visit www.ascendance.org.uk/chaps/index.htm