Kate Bush: The Line, The Cross & The Curve

More news on Kate Bush’s upcoming series of live shows at London’s Hammersmith Apollo: seven more shows have been added, bringing the total to 22 – and all of the shows are sold out. A total of 77,000 seats were sold out within 15 minutes. This news is amazing, but understandable considering that these shows will be Bush's first full concerts in 35 years.

One time when Bush was rumored to have considered touring during that long hiatus was in or around 1993, when she recorded her album titled The Red Shoes. That album had a more immediate and down-to-earth sound than most of her earlier works, possibly to make the songs easier to reproduce live. Although she did not tour in support of the album, she did direct and star in a short film called The Line, The Cross, & The Curve, which visualized dance performances and other bits of theatricality built around six of the songs from The Red Shoes. After premiering at the 1993 London Film Festival , the film went straight to video in most markets. It was released on VHS and LaserDisc, and is now out of print.

The 43-minute short film has a vague storyline inspired by the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale The Red Shoes, as well as the 1948 Michael Powell/Emeric Pressburger film of the same title. The photogenic Ms. Bush portrays a dancer who is tricked by a mysterious, devilish woman (played by English actress Miranda Richardson) into wearing a fancy pair of red shoes. The shoes cause the dancer to dance unendingly, and she is transported into a hellish dimension that symbolizes her obsession with her craft.

The visual sequences that accompany four of the songs seem like little more than promotional videos. “Rubberband Girl”, “And So Is Love”, “Moments Of Pleasure”, and “Eat The Music” look as though they were designed for rotation on VH1 rather than as part of a plot. There is plenty of MTV-style visual flair on display, but the story (such as it is) is ineffectual. The imagery does acknowledge the religious themes of Andersen’s original story, but it’s presented in a way that is more flashy than meaningful.

The Line, The Cross & The Curve will interest Bush’s ardent fans, but it’s best seen as a video accessory to the Red Shoes album, not as a standalone film work in its own right.

Kate Bush - The Line, the Cross & the Curve

Kate Bush: The Line, The Cross & The Curve (Columbia Music Video VHS 19V50118) 1993

Featured songs (in order):

1. Rubberband Girl
2. And So Is Love
3. The Red Shoes
4. Lily
5. The Red Shoes (instrumental)
6. Moments Of Pleasure
7. Eat The Music
8. The Red Shoes