Saturday, 10 October 2009

Screen Dance

One of the special things that I have seen recently is a British Council-sponsored series on "Screen Dance" in the UK. Contemporary choreographers are these days so enamoured of putting "multimedia" video projections into their works, but in Singapore there are far fewer of us looking into video itself as a performance medium.

Who needs lunch when you can go for a talk by the electrifying Liz Aggiss. She began dancing when she was 30, becoming a fearless artist and choreographer, and also a dance film maker and academic. In person and in some quirky on-screen introductions in the film, she pointed out the vast possibilities of film for directing and framing the audience's point of view, and also creating special effects to transcend gravity, venue, and sound. How nice to be able to keep a record of the work for posterity, that is made to be viewed on screen instead of inch-high blots for dancers on the wide-angle stage shot. It surely helps when generous institutions realise the potential and reach of dance film. The UK has the BBC, Channel 4 and the Arts Council England.

Singapore is just now falling in love with animation, computer graphics and film shorts. The most beautiful movement in Singapore is waiting to be shot and edited!

Performance Updates

What a hiatus! I confess! I have been very busy dancing, and thinking and making dances at quite a frantic pace. It has been wonderful so far, discovering a lot of possibilities that I never realised, learning about my body and my thoughts, seeing a lot of very innovative work (see the wildly wonderful calendar on the edge of my seat at right), and finding that my limits may be much further than I would have dreamed of two years ago before I started this programme! Wonderful, and absolutely exhausting at the same time.

Two of the exciting projects that I'm involved in right now:

The Third Space at the Esplanade dan:s festival
30-31 October (Fri-Sat), 7.30pm Esplanade Recital Studio

I will be performing a contemporary Bharatanatyam dance theatre piece by Nirmala Seshadri. Incorporating classical Indian dance and music with contemporary movement, theatre, video and chinese poetry by Singapore-based poet Dan Ying, "This and That" is an intense piece is about age, memories and unfulfilled dreams. It is one of four dances in this year's NAFA Third Space showcase, an annual exploration of Asian traditions and history through contemporary dance.

More details here. Tickets are available from SISTIC.

NAFA Music Department new compositions showcase
3 November, 4pm, NAFA Lee Foundation Theatre

A new collaborative work with Indonesian contemporary music composer Jenny Rompas, which I am choreographing and dancing with Tong Wen Yee. The showcase also includes new music/multimedia collaborations by other composition students.