Lest one think that the cycle of life is all about feminine energy, there is the aggressive male posturing and clashes that could be territorial or simply about primacy.
Lin has said The Eternal Tides is about the cycle of tides, from drops of rainwater that fall into rivers and flow to the oceans and rise again into the clouds. I did not make that connection, but I was too enthralled by the world Lin has created on stage to care.
Lighting designer Cheng Kuo-yang’s (鄭國揚) work is terrific. The pitch black that surrounds Samao and White Bird in their duet imbues the colors of their bodies and costumes with luminous intensity, while the use of select spotlights and smoke turned the National Theater’s stage into an otherworldly temple, aided by Penny Tsai Pei-ling’s (蔡珮玲) stage design.
The haunting sounds of singer Hsu Ching-chwen (許景淳), who is seen briefly at the beginning enveloped in a massive white hood and wrap, provide an ethereal backdrop to the production.
As always with Legend Lin, the costumes by Wang Chia-hui (王佳惠), were simple yet beautiful, continuing with the Aboriginal and hill tribe motifs that Tim Yip (葉錦添) drew upon for Lin’s previous works.
The company will perform The Eternal Tides again in December at National Taiwan University of Arts in Banchiao District (板橋), New Taipei City, so those who missed the shows at the National Theater might considering marking their calendars now — otherwise it could be a couple of years before the production is seen again in Taiwan.