5 Part Dance
Cultural Centre, Studio Theatre October 7-9
Never disregard where a master’s gaze fixes or you may risk missing something truly prodigious. The gaze of Lin Hwai-min, founder of the first contemporary dance group in the Chinese-speaking world, is no doubt fixing on the fledgling choreographers from Cloud Gate 2 – Cloud Gate’s junior company founded in 1999. Having wooed audiences and critics in native Taiwan and Europe, Cloud Gate 2 finally makes its first visit to Hong Kong this October, prior to their US tour. What have been keeping the troupe from visiting are probably their performances and outreach programmes on campuses and in grass-root communities around Taiwan, which in fact are the founding objectives of Cloud Gate 2.
Presented by Zuni Icosahedron, 5 Part Dance features five works from four of Cloud Gate 2’s young choreographers. Huang Yi, the enfant terrible in Lin’s eye, turns some harmless frivolity inside an office into a full-blown white-collar battle in Ta-ta for Now. The speed and fluidity in his other work, Wicked Fish, is no less than a visual challenge. The troupe is temporarily missing Yi, who is carrying out his compulsory military service, while regrettably losing Wu Kuo-chu forever to leukemia. Wu’s choreography was once hailed, not without poignancy, as ‘body language close to heaven’ by the German press. He left behind his work Tantalus, inspired by Greek myth of human sacrifice, that resonates with today’s desolate city life.
Cheng Tsung-lung created The Wall in 2007 during a low time in his life. The work unwittingly gives Cheng’s dancers a hard time alternating between the angular moves and the free-flowing contours, set to the complex rhythm of Michael Gordon’s music. “As Leonard Cohen says: ‘There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in’,” Cheng explains. “It carries the notion that there is hope, no matter what kinds of predicaments we face – it’s a beautiful saying. Leonard Cohen uses language to inspire people, whereas I use dance to get across the same force. I hope I can…”
The repetitious dressing and undressing of dancers on stage in Bulareyaung Pagarlava’s Passage may intrigue many in the audience. Pagarlava’s many death-related nightmares during the time when Passage was first conceived, in 1999, are turned into his work’s surreal landscape. “Truth be told, at that time I wasn’t sure what this work tried to express. I was like one of the audience members, using my imagination to shape the story,” says Pagarlava. “The most common response I heard from the audience was ‘wow!’ – not so much because they think the work was great, but rather we’re going on a journey together.” And what about all the dressing and undressing? “Can I keep it to myself for now?” the choreographer playfully replies.
Tickets: 2734 9009; www.urbtix.hk.