[中][ENG] 與光影構作共舞

Dancing with the Dramaturgy of Light and Shadow


文:陳一云


“(...) what did Heiner Müller say about Robert Wilson ’art without stress, the step plants the path’ where he is certainly making reference to the light which seems step by step to create the way where performers move.”

Hans-Thies Lehmann (1944-2022)


在闡明光於當代劇場中的重要性時,著名劇場學者漢斯–提斯.雷曼引用劇作家穆勒形容威爾森劇場作品的光影作為點題。威爾森的作品以光影、空間、時間、表演者的身體及動作去建構跨界、模糊、夢幻的舞台意象而見稱。穆勒藉「沒有壓力的藝術」點出光不具實體形態及高度可塑的本質。光雖無形,卻能一步步栽種出表演者在舞台空間遊走的路徑,光正是結合表演者和空間不可或缺的劇場要素。光令表演者及空間能被觀眾看見;光製造幻象,令日出、日落、黑夜等真實現象在劇場再現;光的顏色、強度、時間及方向等和表演結合營造出各種氛圍。而以身體和動作為主的表演如舞蹈、舞蹈劇場及形體劇場,光亦是模塑及凸顯表演者身體立體感,以及製造舞台空間感的重要元素。美國燈光設計先鋒珍.羅森塔爾(Jean Rosenthal)自上世紀三十年代末起和瑪莎.葛蘭姆(Martha Graham)及喬治.巴蘭欽(George Balanchine)等舞蹈家合作無間,她發展了側光(side light)去強調舞者身體及舞台空間感。這些收藏於舞台兩側的光源,至今仍是舞蹈表演常見的燈光元素。


然而,除了這些人所共知的角色外,光在以身體和動作為主的表演還有甚麼可能性?透過以下兩個不同年代的舞蹈表演,筆者嘗試探索光在舞蹈中獨特的角色及表演性。

《雨》2016年重演的影片截圖 Still from the 2016 revival of Rain / 截圖來源 Still source:Rain (2016 revival) - teaser. YouTube, uploaded by Rosas, 20 Dec 2018 / 取自 Available from:https://youtu.be/C1aEA4qqYew


洛伊.富勒(Loie Fuller,1862-1928)既是舞蹈家也是劇場燈光技術發明家。十九世紀末,她在美國開展舞蹈生涯,之後在法國憑其獨舞「蛇舞」(serpentine dance)大放異彩。演出中,富勒穿上由大幅全白真絲製成的舞服,服裝的長度超過其身高兩倍,布下則藏著兩支長竹枝。表演一開始,觀眾會見到富勒藉著舞蹈動作及揮舞竹枝,將真絲服裝轉化成巨型旋轉的雕塑。在精心編排的燈光角度及顏色變化下,觀眾看到的再不是舞者,而是巨大的紫羅蘭、蝴蝶、滑動的蛇和白色的海浪。燈光正是這變化萬千演出製作的核心。富勒在創作階段已與光一起建構作品:她擁有自己的實驗室去研發新的燈光色彩技術和布料;每次演出都會有14至38位技術員參與製作及操作笨重的弧光燈,她長時間和技術員綵排以達至所追求的獨特燈光變化。當時有報導形容富勒不只是在燈光下舞動,而是和燈光共舞,可見其結合燈光和舞蹈的精湛及創新。她不只為自己的身體編舞,也和燈光一起「編舞」,令光成為她的共同表演者和創作者。


美國舞者及學者Ann Cooper Albright 曾親自實驗復刻富勒的表演。演出過程中,Albright 發現燈光強烈影響表演者的身體經驗以至創作。當她模擬富勒在強光穿透的玻璃地板上獨舞時,她時而感到被封閉,時而得到啟發,時而迷失方向。這些超現實的感覺似乎和富勒表演中的靈性面向一脈相承。她相信富勒在表演當刻的感受也會被自己所編排的燈光變化所強化,甚至影響創作。燈光不再只是效果,而是和舞者平等同行的伙伴。


時間快速向前一世紀。2001年首演的《雨》(Rain)是比利時編舞家安娜.德瑞莎.姬爾美(Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker)的經典作品。舞蹈的音樂是美國作曲家史提夫.萊許 (Steve Reich)1976年的簡約主義音樂作品 《Music for 18 Musicians》。這不單是演出的音樂,其樂曲結構也成為 《雨》 的戲劇構作基礎。姬爾美並非以舞蹈重現音樂,而是探索編舞有多大程度要依賴音樂結構的支撑,又怎樣脫離音樂架構去發展舞蹈自身的獨特結構。她運用不同的基本動作、黃金矩形及黃金螺旋等幾何空間運動結構,藉著參照不同音樂作曲技巧的編舞手法如卡農(canon)、逆行(retrograde)及鏡像(mirrors)等,令舞蹈動作產生一種帶著嚴謹對位法的質感。同一道理,《雨》的燈光並非單純從設計層面去再現或襯托舞者的動作或音樂的節奏,而是有著自身的形式及結構,與舞蹈和音樂對話,形成獨特的光影構作(dramaturgy of light)。


演出一開始,身兼燈光及舞台設計的恩.瓦斯維費爾德(Jan Versweyveld)就以由慢至快、逆行於舞者進場的黃金螺旋路徑的強光燈去打開這段對話。除了以隱約燈光閃動表示每個音樂段落轉接之外,瓦氏沒有緊緊跟隨音樂及舞蹈結構,也不是簡單地以光區凸顯某些舞者、動作或圖形,而是於段落中的不同時段微妙地改變燈光的整體構作:台面上不時隱約凸顯圓心或不同的直、橫或斜綫,當舞者隨動作穿越這些區間時顯得或明或暗;顏色或緩或疾地轉變;側光不再單純均勻地突出舞者身體,而是藉著集中於舞台後方兩邊的側光,隨著左或右不時的光度及顏色變化,令同一時間身處不同舞台空間的舞者被模塑成不同的質感,使到在舞台後方的舞者,由於身處側光的範圍會顯得更立體,又或因更近光源而變得明顯,同時近台口的舞者因在側光以外範圍,光度較暗而像個剪影。演出最後以開場相反方向的強光燈作結。

《雨》2016年重演的影片截圖 Still from the 2016 revival of Rain / 截圖來源 Still source:Rain (2016 revival) - teaser. YouTube, uploaded by Rosas, 20 Dec 2018 / 取自 Available from:https://youtu.be/C1aEA4qqYew


在整個七十分鐘的演出中,不同的燈光方向、幾何形狀、線條、強弱和顏色隨時間流變,建構出光影自身的音色和韻律,譜寫成《雨》的光之旋律綫。這延綿不斷的光影旋律綫,形成燈光自身獨特的構作框架,與舞者、動作、空間及音樂對話,彷如複音音樂的其中一個旋律,與舞蹈及音樂等其他旋律互相交織延伸,合奏出完整的樂章。透過音樂性的構作,燈光再一次成為和舞蹈平等同行的表演伙伴。


光影作為同行創作的伙伴及表演者,以及光影的音樂性構作,正是筆者近年在不同裝置、劇場及音樂表演中主力探索、實驗及研究的方向。(註)然而誠如雷曼於《後戲劇劇場》所探討及揭示的當代劇場美學多元性,光影的表演性及音樂性構作,只是眾多表演美學的其中一二。筆者深信唯有反思劇場中光影構作的獨特性,與之同行共舞,始能開展光影與身體及動作的無限可能。


註:詳情另見筆者文章:



參考書目

De Keersmaeker, Anne Teresa, and Bojana Cvejić. Drumming & Rain: A Choreographer's Score. Mercatorfonds, 2015.


Garelick, Rhonda K. “Loie Fuller and the Serpentine.” The Public Domain Review, 6 Nov 2019, https://publicdomainreview.org/essay/loie-fuller-and-the-serpentine.


Lehmann, Hans-Thies. Postdramatic Theatre. Translated by Karen Jürs-Munby, Routledge, 2006.


Palmer, Scott. Light. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2013.


Rosenthal, Jean. The magic of light: the craft and career of Jean Rosenthal, pioneer in lighting for the modern stage. Light, Brown and Company, 1972.


《洛伊.富勒與她的舞服共舞》Loie Fuller Dancing with Her Veil(1897)/ 照片來源 Photo source:L'Histoire par l'image / © RMN-Grand Palais (Orsay museum) / Michèle Bellot / 取自 Available from:https://histoire-image.org/etudes/loie-fuller-incarnation-symbolisme-scene


Dancing with the Dramaturgy of Light and Shadow

Text: Amy Chan

Translator: Laura Chan


“(...) what did Heiner Müller say about Robert Wilson ‘art without stress, the step plants the path’ where he is certainly making reference to the light which seems step by step to create the way where performers move.”

Hans-Thies Lehmann (1944-2022)


When elaborating on the importance of lighting in contemporary theatre, that was how renowned theatre scholar Hans-Thies Lehmann made a key point quoting playwright Heiner Müller’s comment on the lighting in Robert Wilson’s work. Wilson’s work was known for its use of light and shadow, space, time, performers’ bodies, and movement which contributed to creating boundary crossing, ambiguous and dreamlike images on stage. Müller used the expression “art without stress” to point out the intangible and highly sculptable nature of light. While light itself has no shape, it can map out the performers’ path of movement on stage, making it the indispensable element in combining space and performers in the theatre. Light allows the performers and the stage to be seen; light creates illusions, replicating sunrise, sunset and night on the stage; the colour, intensity, timing and angles of light combine with performances to create different atmospheres.


In performances featuring bodies and movement like dance, dance theatre and physical theatre, light also moulds and highlights performers’ bodies and creates a sense of space essentially. American lighting pioneer Jean Rosenthal worked closely with choreographers like Martha Graham and George Balanchine from the late 1930s onward and developed the use of sidelighting to make dancers’ bodies and stage spaces stand out on the stage. This kind of lighting is still commonly found in dance performances today.


Apart from these well-known functions, what other possibilities does lighting offer in performances featuring bodies and movement? I shall explore the unique role and impact of lighting in dance through two performances from different time periods.

《雨》2016年重演的影片截圖 Still from the 2016 revival of Rain / 截圖來源 Still source:Rain (2016 revival) - teaser. YouTube, uploaded by Rosas, 20 Dec 2018 / 取自 Available from:https://youtu.be/C1aEA4qqYew


Dancer Loie Fuller (1862-1928) was also a stage lighting innovator. Her dance career began in the USA then blossomed in France from 1892 through her unique solo piece “Serpentine Dance”. In the performance, Fuller wore costumes made from large pieces of white silk two times her height. Under the costume were two long bamboo sticks, and the audience saw Fuller moving both her body and the sticks to turn the costume into an enormous spinning sculpture. Under carefully arranged lighting angles and colours, the audience no longer saw the dancer but rather, a kaleidoscope of huge violet, butterflies, slithering snake and white waves. Lighting was without doubt the essence of the production. Fuller constructed each piece from the start with lighting as an integral element. She had her own laboratory to invent colour techniques and textiles to be used in lighting; each performance had 14 to 38 technicians participating and operating bulky arc lamps, and Fuller rehearsed with the technicians until they were able to achieve the unique lighting effects they had in mind. Reviews at the time commented that Fuller was not only dancing under the lights, but together with the lights, proving the excellence and originality of her efforts. She not only choreographed the dance for her body, but also the lighting, and made lighting her partner in the process.


When American dancer and scholar Ann Cooper Albright tried to recreate Fuller’s performances, she found that the lighting had a major impact on the performer’s physical experience and creativity. When she simulated Fuller’s solo dance on a glass floor with light shining through it, she felt in turn isolated, enlightened, and disoriented. These surreal sensations seemed to echo the spirituality in Fuller’s performances. Cooper Albright believes that Fuller’s feelings were heightened by the lighting, which also affected the way she created. Lighting was no longer simply a visual effect but a partner for the dancer.


Fast forwarding a century Rain, which premiered in 2001, was Belgian choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker’s signature piece. It was set to Steve Reich’s minimalist 1976 composition, Music for 18 Musicians and, instead of acting merely as background music, the structure of the music formed the basis of the dramatic structure. The dance did not aim to echo the music, but rather, to explore how dance could develop its own unique structure apart from the musical structure. Keersmaeker used basic movements with geometric structures such as golden rectangles and golden spirals and took reference from techniques of musical composition like canon, retrograde and mirrors to attach a symmetrical structure to the dance. Similarly, Rain’s lighting was not merely used to support the dance or the music, it had its own formation and structure which created a dialogue with both dance and music, constructing a unique ‘dramaturgy of light’.


At the beginning of the show, lighting and stage designer Jan Versweyveld initiated this dialogue using strong light in retrograde to the golden spiral pattern of the dancers’ steps and going from slow to fast. Apart from the flickering lights that signaled the transition between musical passages, Versweyveld did not strictly follow the music or dance structure, and did not simply spotlight specific dancers, movements, or images. He made subtle changes to the lighting composition at different times: hints of circles and lines were projected on the dancers’ bodies, casting shadows on them; colours changed at different speeds, sidelights did not just evenly highlight the dancers’ bodies, but changed in brightness and colour to create textures on their bodies when they were in different parts of the stage. Dancers at the back looked more three dimensional or stood out more vividly due to their proximity to the sidelights, while dancers beyond the range of the light appeared darker, like silhouettes. The performance ended with strong light in the opposite direction to that at the beginning of the performance.

《雨》2016年重演的影片截圖 Still from the 2016 revival of Rain / 截圖來源 Still source:Rain (2016 revival) - teaser. YouTube, uploaded by Rosas, 20 Dec 2018 / 取自 Available from:https://youtu.be/C1aEA4qqYew


During the 70-minute show, the angles, shapes and lines of the lighting, its brightness and colours, transformed over time to construct their own voice and rhythm, creating the lighting melody of Rain. This continuous melodic line of light and shadow gave a unique structure to the lighting itself and created a dialogue with dancers, movement, space, and music, like a line of melody in polyphony, interweaving with other melodies of dance and music to become a complete symphony. Through using this kind of musical structure, lighting had once again become an equal partner of dance.


In recent years, I have focused on researching, exploring and experimenting with light and shadow and the musical composition of light and shadow as a creative partner of performance, in a variety of different installations, theatres and music performances. (Note) However, as Lehmann notes in Postdramatisches Theatre on the diversity of contemporary theatre aesthetics, the performativity and musical composition of lighting are only one or two of the wide range of performance aesthetics. I believe that it is only by reflecting on the uniqueness of the composition of light and shadow in the theatre and engaging with it that we will be able to open up the infinite possibilities of light and shadow, bodies and movement.


Note: see author’s other articles for more:


Bibliography

De Keersmaeker, Anne Teresa, and Bojana Cvejić. Drumming & Rain: A Choreographer's Score. Mercatorfonds, 2015.


Garelick, Rhonda K. “Loie Fuller and the Serpentine.” The Public Domain Review, 6 Nov 2019, https://publicdomainreview.org/essay/loie-fuller-and-the-serpentine.


Lehmann, Hans-Thies. Postdramatic Theatre. Translated by Karen Jürs-Munby, Routledge, 2006.


Palmer, Scott. Light. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2013.


Rosenthal, Jean. The magic of light: the craft and career of Jean Rosenthal, pioneer in lighting for the modern stage. Light, Brown and Company, 1972.



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陳一云 Amy Chan

從事燈光藝術及劇場的創作及研究,探索光影之音樂性、表演性及劇場性。 (www.amychan-light.com/)

Light and theatre artist and artistic researcher, exploring the musicality, performativity, and theatricality of light in performance and installations. (www.amychan-light.com/)

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