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[中][ENG]「舞」的「空/間」

Space within Dance


文:何應豐




近日,香港舞蹈團的助理藝術總監謝茵邀請我替她明年新作《如影》的舞蹈員設計連串有關探討「舞蹈行動」的工作坊。事源謝茵過去兩年參加了我策劃的《如花。如水。如母》藝行研究計劃,經歷了母親以「繪。話」的訪談體驗,目睹母親們一邊繪畫一邊說自身故事的特殊情境,從中感悟,回想舞蹈表演究竟是怎麼一回事?重訪自己過去,從習舞到成為一個「專業舞者」,她一一再問:究竟身心經歷了甚麼?長期以來,由一個製作到另一個製作,舞台究竟是怎樣的一個地方?和身體又有怎樣的虛實關係?在一切看似理所當然的進入生產線上的「製作」,究竟製造了怎樣的一個自己?她曾穿越過的「舞蹈空間」,又是甚麼?

《O先生家族死亡事件》上半場/香港文化中心劇場

Set for the first half of The Tragedy of Mr O / Hong Kong Cultural Centre Studio Theatre

(照片由作者提供 Photo provided by the author)


工作坊中我以四個「行動框架」,讓舞者分享自己生命中有過的不同體驗,包括「一首歌的情感和處境記憶」、「搜尋家庭圖譜」、「身體的成長印記」和「我的今昔對話」。四組不同切入的情感,書寫著生活體驗中未曾碰觸的「私密國度」,打開很不一樣的內部空間。


紙,如舞台;筆,連貫心事,成為「舞蹈身體」。藝行所要求的,不單只是技巧,是回到在場的坦誠身段,觀察當下一點一線的行進。每位舞者呈現出很不一樣的觀照空間,箇中輕、重和節奏,充滿細緻的生活質感。紙上的筆痕清晰表露她們透過行動建築出來的「敘事空間」!


謝茵形容,在看似沒甚麼舞動的「繪。話」空間,舞者移動著的筆痕和身體投入的那份誠實而專注的能量,教她重拾充滿生命力的想像。那是舞蹈學校沒有教的、專業團隊都隱藏了的重要藝術心跡!


行動,究竟是一件怎樣的東西?舉手投足間的舞風,究竟是從何而發?

《O先生家族死亡事件》下半場/香港文化中心劇場

Set for the second half of The Tragedy of Mr O / Hong Kong Cultural Centre Studio Theatre

(照片由作者提供 Photo provided by the author)


教我想起2014年和王健偉合作替黎海寧設計的《咏嘆調》(「動藝」作品):在一個特殊年頭,幾個舞者試圖尋索即將消失的城市記憶,他們如何看自己的身影,追溯當下轉眼即逝的城市光影?究竟是舞者心中的「移動空間」,還是「情感空間」,改寫著城市的印象?或是城市流轉的不定性,改變著人的存在感覺?


舞台空間,一切似乎理應由空白開始!但是,回到香港藝術中心壽臣劇院,建築物本身已是一種記憶符號,早有預設了的個性,怎會是完全「空白」?奈何,舞台創作人本來如是「偏執」,就假設著我們的舞台空間是可以在上面寫詩的「白紙」,由舞者的身體如筆勾勒著的「肢體語言」,引領想像……


騰出空間,才能重新承載!在「騰出」和「填上」之間,人的「亮相」和「離場」,每反復給環境改變個性,也同時改變人的存在質性!翩娜.包殊(Pina Bausch)早期作品《穆勒咖啡館》(Café Müller)充分展示著虛實間的行動如何改寫空間的「移動情感」與內涵。


《咏嘆調》中所謂的「城市」,似是半吊空中無法捕捉的移動鏡片,隱若看到的,都是光影在薄膜間流離若失。所謂「空間」,似「在」又似瞬間滑溜到黑暗中。我和王健偉遂躲在樂池,同樣以身體,手執著紙、墨、水、筆,跟蹤著舞者的世界,試圖碰上片點「可相遇的偶爾空間」,在消失前,注入顏色光影。那是一個大家一起共舞的片段憶記,遊蹤都在當下的坦承面對!

《咏嘆調》的舞蹈空間/香港藝術中心壽臣劇院

Dance Space for The Island Whispers… / Hong Kong Arts Centre Shouson Theatre

(照片由作者提供 Photo provided by the author)



舞蹈,是一種以身體在當下空間寫詩的藝術!由身體內部的「情感空間」,以至投影於外的「雕塑空間」,合成為連串移動著的有機「故事世界」,其中兼容著「觀」、「聲」、「陣」三重反覆互動的元素:

一、包括藝術行動者和觀眾可微觀、宏觀、綜觀以至如何行觀的多元多重切面;

二、包括以空間的/音樂的/動作的/能量的內部及至投向外部的情感步韻中蘊含和呈現的具雕塑力的「聲音」;

三、包括編舞、舞者和行觀者在不同空間陣勢下建築、拆解、勾畫及素描的情志和眼界陣式。


編、演、設計和行觀是四環相扣於當下的藝術實踐,由2002年和黎海寧合作的《O先生家族死亡事件》到2016年香港舞蹈團藝術總監楊雲濤邀請合作的《紅樓.夢三闋》(和王健偉聯合設計),前後給我不同週期的舞蹈空間體驗和藝術叩應的開展。


《O先生家族死亡事件》是改編自希臘悲劇《伊狄帕斯王》(Oedipus Rex)的現代舞。由傳統經典轉到當代劇場空間,教我提出另一觀點,舞蹈空間是否必須是「空」的空間才可以容納舞蹈?黎海寧接上了這問題,遂由堆滿物件的空間起步。對舞者和觀眾,同時必須打破慣常習性,尋找另類的藝行領空。上下兩幕,把空間切換成對比性的反轉,舞者的能量和身體語言,亦隨著實和虛的移動,出現很不一樣的語境。



《紅樓.夢三闋》是三位創作人(黎海寧、楊雲濤和我)對《紅樓夢》的延伸思考。三個觀點,三重時間維度!我借人物思考「未來」;楊雲濤以個人切入叩應其中自己作為舞者和「劇中人」間的解構和再閱讀;黎海寧則以「夢未完」作出溯古追今的想像。如何邀請觀眾參與「觀點」的建築,是王健偉和我在思考劇場空間與行觀的關係時的重點;我們決定運用文化中心劇場的兩層性,邀請觀眾中場調換上下層觀賞,樓下是四面定格的位置,樓上是可以自由移動的「大觀」空間。循作品的結構特色,重新思考行動和行觀之間可重塑的關係。


回到謝茵《如影》的工作坊,正是回轉到舞者作為行動的藝行主軸,他的「觀」、「照」、「行」、「思」、「悟」於當下,應是牽動著整體(包括創作人和觀眾)進行行觀作出「空間雕塑」的重要對應起點。


2022年10月24日

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何應豐

表演藝術及文化工作者




Space within Dance

Text: Ho Ying-fung

Translator: Laura Chan


Recently Xie Yin, the Assistant Artistic Director of Hong Kong Dance Company (HKDC), invited me to design a series of workshops for dancers taking part in her new work Womanhood next year, to explore ‘the act of dancing’. She had attended my art programme “As Flower, As Mother, As Water” for the past two years and observed the remarkable interview sessions with mothers telling their stories through painting and talking. It made Xie think again about the nature of dance performances. She reflects on her journey from studying dance to becoming a professional dancer and examine the physical and emotional impact she felt in the process. For many years she has gone from production to production, but what is the actual meaning of the stage and how does it relate to the body? While everything in the production line seems familiar, how does it define her and what is the ‘dance space’ has she travelled through?


I designed four different frameworks for the workshop for dancers to take part in and share their personal experiences. These were: “Emotional and Contextual Memories Triggered by a Song”, “Search for the Genogram”, “The Body’s Growth” and “Dialogue between Past and Present Self”. These perspectives touched upon multiple secret territories in life and opened up various internal spaces. Paper became a stage and pens became the bodies that danced on it; this kind of art creation requires not only skill, but also the willingness to be present and observe every detail of the process. Each dancer had vastly different observations with their own relative importance and complex details. What they put down on paper clearly revealed the narrative space created through their actions.

《紅樓.夢三闋》的上層觀舞空間/香港文化中心劇場

Balcony viewing space for audience, Reveries of the Red Chamber / Hong Kong Cultural Centre Studio Theatre

(照片由作者提供 Photo provided by the author)


Xie said that, while it seemed that not much movement could be found in the process of storytelling, the powerful authenticity and dedication generated by the dancers through writing revitalised her imagination. This is an important aspect of art that is not taught in professional training.


So how should we define action, and in the end what creates different styles of dance?


I thought of The Island Whispers… produced by DanceArt and choreographed by Helen Lai, which I designed together with Jan Wong in 2014. During a very special period of time, a number of dancers tried to find the memory of a city which was about to disappear. How did they perceive themselves as they chased the fading images of the city? Was it the movement or the emotions within the minds of the dancers that rewrote their impressions of the city, or was it the transient nature of the city that affected their sense of existence?


It seems that setting the stage for a performance should start from a clean slate, but the architecture of Hong Kong Art Centre Shouson Theatre is already a symbol in itself with a defined character; it is hardly a ‘blank page’. Nonetheless the creators treated the stage as a blank piece of paper, one where the dancers could write poems with their bodies and inspire imagination. A cup has to be emptied to be refilled; how people repeatedly come and go alters the character of the environment, and in turn affects the nature of human existence. Pina Bausch’s early work Café Müller fully demonstrates how both tangible and intangible actions can change emotions and substance within a space.


The so-called ‘city’ in The Island Whispers… was a moving lens suspended in mid-air in which images flickered. It seemed that space existed but could slip into darkness at any time. Jan Wong and I were in the orchestra pit with pens and paper, trying to follow the dancers and capture “a temporary space for encounters”, to fill it with colours and light before it faded. When they danced together was a moment when they faced each other with complete honesty.

《紅樓.夢三闋》空間模型(王健偉、何應豐聯合設計)/香港文化中心劇場

Spatial model for Reveries of the Red Chamber (Co-designed by Jan Wong and Ho Ying Fung) / Hong Kong Cultural Centre Studio Theatre

(照片由作者提供 Photo provided by the author)


Dance is an art form where bodies write poems in the present moment. The ‘emotional space’ inside the body together with the ‘sculptural space’ projected outside form an organic environment in which stories may be told. The elements of ‘sight’, ‘sound’ and ‘form’ interact repeatedly:

  1. ‘Sight’ includes the micro, macro, universal and practical perspectives of both the artists and the audience;

  2. ‘Sound’ includes sounds generated both internally and externally by spatial, musical, physical and energetic motions;

  3. ‘Form’ includes the feelings and perspectives constructed, deconstructed, outlined and sketched by choreographers, dancers and the audience in different spaces.

Configuration, acting, design and appreciation are interconnected elements in how art is practised. Productions such as The Tragedy of Mr O on which I collaborated with Helen Lai in 2002, or Reveries of the Red Chamber which I co-designed with Jan Wong at the invitation of HKDC’s Artistic Director Yang Yuntao in 2016, brought me different experiences related to space in dance.


The Tragedy of Mr O was a modern dance work adapted from the Greek tragedy Oedipus Rex. Presenting a traditional classic in a contemporary theatre made me ask: must dance be performed in an ‘empty’ space? Helen Lai took up this idea and started the show in a space filled with objects. Both the dancers and the audience had to think outside the box to search for an alternative landscape. A change in space between the first and second half created a contrast between reality and emptiness which was reflected in the energy and body language of the dancers, giving rise to different meanings.


Reveries of the Red Chamber consisted of reflections on Dream of the Red Chamber by three creators (Helen Lai, Yang Yuntao and me). It featured three different perspectives and three dimensions in time: I reflected on the ‘future’ through the characters; Yang deciphered the relationship between dancers and roles in the drama; Lai looked into past dreams and extended the imagination into the present. Jan Wong and I wanted to make use of physical space to invite the audience to participate in constructing their own perspectives, and decided to ask them to change location between the first and second half. In the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Studio Theatre the ground floor seats by the stage area were fixed while up in the balcony the audience could move around freely. The idea was to rethink the relationship between action on the stage and the viewpoint of the audience.


Returning to the workshops for Xie Yin’s Womanhood, the focus is on the dancers as a foundation. Their perspectives, reflections, actions, thoughts and understanding form the essential starting point for what everyone, creators and audiences, will experience.



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24 October 2022


Ho Ying-fung

Performing arts and cultural worker.


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