Fri, Dec 06, 2019 - Page 14 News List

A packed dance card

Taipei is bursting with dance performances next weekend, which, if you are a TNUA student, alumnus or teacher wanting to keep up with the School of Dance’s current students or graduates, could prove tricky

By Diane Baker  /  Staff reporter

Czech choreographer Jiri Kylian’s Falling Angels is one of three works on winter concert program of Taipei National University of the Arts’s School of Dance, (Dis)equilibrium, which premieres at the university in Taipei’s Guandu District on Thursday next week.

Photo courtesy of Pong Jun-ming

It is often feast or famine when it comes to dance performances around Taipei: Weeks of either nothing or just one show per weekend, and then a deluge.

It is time to pull out the umbrellas because next weekend brings five programs ranging from a student production to the latest by up-and-coming choreographers to a “work-in-progress.”

Starting off — purely in chronological order — the School of Dance at Taipei National University of the Arts (TNUA, 國立臺北藝術大學) opens a five-performance run of its winter concert, (Dis)equilibrium (衡), on Thursday night at the campus Dance Theater.

On Friday, Benson Tsai’s (蔡博丞) B.DANCE (丞舞製作團隊) takes to the stage of the Metropolitan Hall for the first time for his latest work, INNERMOST, while Taiwan-based Italian dancer/choreographer Mauro Sacchi will be at the HAUS Studio to preview a new work, 5 years, 5 days (五年,五天), which is scheduled to premiere next year.

On Saturday, Lai Hung-chung’s (賴翃中) Hung Dance (翃舞製作) troupe gives the first of two shows at the Taiwan Traditional Theatre Center’s Experimental Theater of its inaugural Stray Birds Platform (漂鳥舞蹈平台), while over at the Songshan Cultural and Creative Park, choreographer/dancer Tien Hsiao-tzu (田孝慈) will be capping off a very busy year with her latest collaborative work, Masses (群眾).

The following weekend, the park’s Song Yan Creative LAB will host a new work by Dua Shin Te Production (大身體), A Piece of Cake, created by choreographer Liu Yen-cheng (劉彥成) and two frequent collaborators, freelancers Wang Chu-hua (王筑樺) and Shen Le (沈樂).

BALANCING ACT

(Dis)equilibrium is a triple bill featuring a work by a visiting instructor, Italian Francesco D’Astici, founder of I.T. Fused Dance; a restaging of one of Czech choreographer Jiri Kylian’s works as part of the school’s Kylian Project; and a piece by alumnus Chang Chien-ming (張建明), a member of the Brighton, England-based Hofesh Shechter Company.

In June last year, the school put on Kylian’s Soldier’s Mass, created in 1980 for the Nederlands Dans Theater (NDT), the first time that any university dance department in the world had been given permission to stage one of his works.

Australian choreographer Leigh Warren, a visiting professor at TNUA and a former NDT dancer, was instrumental in getting that production for the school.

Warren, along with two reconstruction specialists from Kylian Productions, Shirley Esseboom and Roslyn Anderson, have now staged Falling Angels, a ballet choreographed in 1989 for eight women and set to Steve Reich’s Drumming Part 1, for the winter concert.

D’Astici has worked with many Taiwanese companies over the years, having been a guest ballet teacher for Cloud Gate 2 (雲門2), choreographed for Tainan-based HuiDance (匯舞集) and taught several courses at TNUA. His piece is entitled Burqa.

Chang has slowly been building up a repertoire of his own works even as he continues to dance with Hofesh, which he joined when the company was founded in 2008.

He had a piece in Meimage Dance’s (何曉玫MEIMAGE舞團) “New Choreographer Project” in 2014, and created another for TNUA’s Focus Dance Company’s (焦點舞團) Grassroots (草根限定) program in 2017. His work for next week’s show is entitled Disappearing Sounds (消失的聲音).

(Dis)equilibriu will be performed Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:30pm, with 2:30pm matinees on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are NT$400.

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