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[中][ENG] 詩舞丹青,境動山水——香港舞蹈團藝術總監楊雲濤與他的《山水》

詩舞丹青,境動山水——香港舞蹈團藝術總監楊雲濤與他的《山水》


文:秦凡洛

(照片由香港舞蹈團提供)


大型原創舞蹈詩《山水》即將在香港文化中心首次亮相,作為香港舞蹈團2021 – 2022新舞季的開篇之作,《山水》帶著對中國傳統文化的探索和對舞蹈藝術本質的追尋,再度令舞台升溫。


時值香港舞蹈團成立四十週年,新舞季開鑼的主題是「舞尋萬象.動求無形」,而《山水》則以「山水有情,萬物有境」作為節目核心開宗明義,二者都帶有濃厚的哲學意味和無限的抽象延伸,值得人細細品鑒。


當舞蹈遇上中國山水畫


香港舞蹈團一直以來立足香港,探索中西文化交融,以往的作品多以香港文化作為投射點,覆蓋流行元素與經典符號。而今次的《山水》則回歸到探索舞蹈本身,尋求舞蹈表現中形神象意之間的關係。在這場探索中,舞蹈與山水畫進行了一次美麗的邂逅,兩種藝術形式一動一靜,亦張亦弛,在各自的藝術邊界裡,勾勒出同一種精神內涵——對意境的追求。


「山水畫是中國傳統人文的精神投射,它並不寫實,畫家也不是為了描摹眼前所見,而是通過畫眼前所見呈現心中所想,個人對人生和自然的思考都藏在畫中。而舞蹈也有異曲同工之妙,舞蹈通過身體將內在精神傳遞出來,傳遞出來的東西也並非具象的,而是抽象的感悟。這大概就是二者的相通之處。」


藝術總監楊雲濤一直致力於從中國傳統文化的角度,探索舞蹈獨有的魅力和特質,並從中汲取靈感進行創作。很多時候,舞蹈受西方審美文化的影響頗深,如何捕捉到東方獨有的氣質並用舞蹈表現出來,一直是楊雲濤格外關注的重點。這種氣韻看不見摸不著,並非是讓舞者披上中式服裝道具、配上中式音樂就能獲取的特徵。楊雲濤想要拆掉皮囊,獲取內在的靈魂,再將這種靈魂植入舞蹈本身。


正是在欣賞中國山水畫時,楊雲濤感知到一種特殊的磁場,他著迷在山水畫展館中,那種難以名狀的舒適感,讓他知覺到這種靈魂的存在。「中國藝術是整體的,這種特有的氣質很吸引我;而山水畫所集中體現的人文色彩和價值觀是很追求抽象意境的,這很有辨識度。如果我們的舞蹈從氣韻和質感上具有這種特徵,那麼一定就是中國舞,而不是簡單從外形來進行舞種類別的區分,我期待《山水》能呈現出這種味道。」


帶著這一願景和信念,楊雲濤開始了舞蹈詩《山水》的創作,嘗試用身體語言去傳達他所看到的山水畫中或宏大、或細膩、或簡約、或微妙的精神世界。


當舞蹈回歸本源


不同於舞劇傳遞的故事性,《山水》更像是一篇揮灑自如的散文詩,著眼於舞蹈本身的內在精神抒發。它在表現形式上運用獨舞、群舞與雙人舞,組成錯落有致的篇章結構。舞台上,舞者的身體就如同畫筆,在空間中揚墨丹青、點灑揮就。而之於觀眾,在欣賞每個段落時,就像在細細觀摩一幅幅山水畫,連綴起來猶如置身於山水間,在中樂與多媒體佈景空間裡,隨著筆墨暢遊。


要做到在畫中舞、在舞中畫,在哲學的有形和無形間閃轉騰挪、進退有度,這是對編舞的一場嚴格考驗,也是對舞者內功的不小挑戰。「當回歸到舞蹈本身,最重要的就是內在表達,通過身體對速度和力量的細膩控制,傳遞精神寫照。」


早在三年前,香港舞蹈團的「中國舞蹈與中國武術之交互研究與成果呈現」就將中國武術元素帶入舞蹈訓練之中,打破固有的肢體運動模式,加強對身體速度和力量的訓練,時而蒼勁,時而婉約,塑造出更豐富的舞動質感。這些訓練探索的成果,亦將給《山水》的創作帶來諸多裨益和延展空間,在形神表現中,給身法、步法、手法帶來別樹一格的創新。


其實,舞蹈與其他藝術門類的跨界融合,對於香港舞蹈團和楊雲濤早已不是第一次嘗試。舞蹈跟書法、武術、電影、粵劇等藝術樣式的碰撞、延伸、融合都曾給觀眾帶來意想不到的驚喜。


一方面,這是源於舞蹈本身具有的抽象性,因而可以容納諸多藝術界別;另一方面,舞蹈最初出現就跟音樂、文學密不可分。《毛詩序》中闡釋舞蹈的起源,便是人們想要表達情感時,言語不足以傳遞內容,於是嗟嘆,嗟嘆又不足以傳達所想,於是歌詠,當歌詠還是不能滿足表達需求時,舞蹈就出現了。所以,舞蹈本身就是一首舞動的詩、立體的畫,由始至終都在傳達舞者心中飽滿難平的情志。


「藝術創作最珍貴的地方,首先是要面對自己。」楊雲濤在分享創作中最珍貴的瞬間時說,「正如那些山水畫一樣,歷史留下的最珍貴的畫,通常並不是展現對其他事物的詠讚,而是展現藝術家面對自己的時刻。」同樣,作為讀詩人、賞畫者和觀舞人,也是在照見自己而達到某種精神狀態時,才能沉醉在詩畫舞蹈藝術之中,與其中的意境產生情感共鳴。有了這種情感共鳴,藝術欣賞也就找到了最好的歸宿。


舞蹈作為傳情達意的藝術載體,在任何時期都在用自己的方式訴說著人類的情感。舞蹈與山水畫的碰撞融合,美若韻腳別緻的詩篇。《山水》亦嘗試撥開沉睡千年的畫張,滿載古樸的青山水色,以東方神韻舞繪穿越時空的精神世界。在這場舞蹈、詩畫、哲學和傳統藝術的濃入淡出間,藝術家和觀眾各自回歸自我觀照,即能找尋到那份難得的本真。《山水》的筆色究竟如何蒼潤,且令觀者拭目以待。


時值特殊的疫情期間,諸多節目排演和訓練條件受到相當的制約,每一場舞台演出都變得十分珍貴。筆者衷心期待香港舞蹈團的舞蹈詩《山水》能順利登台,給走入劇場的觀眾帶來寶貴的藝術體驗,亦期待舞蹈藝術即使在特殊環境下,依然能枝繁葉茂、向陽而生。



==

秦凡洛

文化記者、影視編劇,從事銀幕、劇場、舞台藝術的創作與研究




Creating Poetry with Bodies, Shan Shui in Movement:

Yang Yuntao, Artistic Director of the Hong Kong Dance Company and his Shan Shui: An Ode to Nature


Text: Qin Fanluo

Translator: Giselle Chan

(Photo provided by Hong Kong Dance Company)


The grand original dance poem Shan Shui: An Ode to Nature (“Shan Shui”) is to be premiered at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre in May. As the Hong Kong Dance Company’s opening piece for dance season 2021 - 2022, Shan Shui lights up the stage through its exploration of Chinese traditional culture as well as its search for the essence of the nature of dance as an art form.


In this, Hong Kong Dance Company’s 40th anniversary year, the theme of the new dance season is “Move Within and Without”, while Shan Shui’s core message is “A Waltz of Nature’s Timeless Charm”. Both carry deep philosophical implications and infinite potential for abstract interpretation, which are worthy of in-depth consideration.


When dance meets Chinese Shanshui painting


Hong Kong Dance Company has been exploring the integration of Chinese and Western culture; its past work often used Hong Kong culture as a point of projection to include pop elements as well as traditional symbolism. This time Shan Shui returns to the fundamentals of exploring the essence of dance itself, searching for the relationship between forms of expression and internal messages in dance. Dance and shanshui paintings (literally meaning “mountains and water”, “Shanshui” is the traditional school of Chinese landscape painting using brush and ink) offer a beautiful encounter; two art forms in contrast with each other with their movement and stillness, tension and release. They outline the same spiritual essence regardless of the boundaries of each art form – the pursuit of meaning.


“Shanshui paintings were the projection of the spirit of traditional Chinese culture; it was by no means realistic, and artists did not aim to reproduce the scenery they saw, but rather to present their thoughts through illustrating what they saw. Their reflections on life and nature were hidden in the artwork. Dance is similar in many ways; it expresses meaning through the movement of body, and the messages expressed are often intangible; they are often abstract reflections. This is the main connection between the two.”


Artistic Director Yang Yuntao has always been devoted to exploring the unique charisma and traits of dance through the lens of traditional Chinese culture. As dance has so much Western influence, Yang has made a point of capturing the unique style of the East and presenting it through dance. The essence of the style is intangible; it cannot be manifested by merely dressing dancers in Chinese costumes and playing Chinese music. Yang would like to go beneath the surface and extract the inner spirit of Chinese culture, then implant it into dance itself.


Yang sensed an unusual vibe when he discovered Chinese shanshui paintings; he was enchanted by the enigmatic feeling of serenity permeating the exhibition hall. It was then that he perceived the existence of such a spirit. “The wholeness of Chinese art is a unique quality that attracts me. The cultural essence and values presented by shanshui paintings emphasize the pursuit of abstract concepts, which is a distinctive feature. When our dance is able to grasp this feature in terms of its vibe and feel, that’s when it will become Chinese dance - it is not to be categorized through mere appearance. My idea is for Shan Shui to convey this kind of characteristic.”


With this vision and belief, Yang embarked on the creation of his dance poem Shan Shui, and tried to use bodily language to express the vast yet detailed, simplistic yet enigmatic, spiritual world he saw in shanshui paintings.


When dance returns to its essential nature


Unlike dance theatre which focuses on storytelling, Shan Shui is more like free-flowing prose poetry that emphasizes the expression of the inner meaning of dance itself. It is structured through alternating solo, duo and group dances. The bodies of the dancers are like brushes that leave traces and splashes of ink on the stage. For the audience, viewing each scene is like seeing a different shanshui painting; they will be immersed in waves of movement, Chinese music and multimedia scenery.


To merge painting and dance while handling the tangible form and intangible philosophy of the dance was a huge challenge for choreographer as well as dancers. “When you return to the nature of dance itself, the expression of inner spirit becomes the most important thing. In order to convey the spiritual context, one has to control the body’s speed and power carefully.”


Over the past three years Hong Kong Dance Company’s Research Study on Chinese Martial Arts and Chinese Dance has brought elements of Chinese martial arts into the company’s dance training. It was a breakthrough for the existing patterns of bodily movement, and has strengthened the training of physical speed and power. By training the body to be powerful and graceful in turn, it has constructed a richer texture of dance. The results of this training have also brought benefits and more developmental potential to the creation of Shan Shui, through innovation in the use of body, footwork and technique in terms of forms of expression.


In fact, the crossover of dance and other art forms is not something new to Yang and Hong Kong Dance Company. The integration, development and contrast between dance and other art forms like calligraphy, martial arts, films and Chinese opera have brought unexpected revelations to audiences.


On the one hand, this was due to dance’s abstract nature as an art form which allows it to incorporate elements from different arts; on the other hand, the emergence of dance has always been inseparable from music and literature. In Preface to Mao’s Poetry, it is explained that dance originated from people not being able to express their emotions through mere speech; they then sighed but sighing did not suffice; then they sang, and when even songs were not enough, dance appeared. Therefore dance itself was equated with moving poems and vibrant paintings; it has always conveyed the emotions which fill the dancers’ hearts.


“The most valuable part of creating art is to start by facing oneself,” said Yang when sharing key moments in his creative process. “Like shanshui paintings, the greatest paintings in history often don’t simply depict the beauty of other objects; they reveal the moments when artists look inside themselves.” Similarly, only when readers and viewers of poetry, paintings and dance are able to see themselves and reach a certain spiritual stage, are they able to immerse themselves in these works of art and resonate with the meaning of the artworks. With this kind of emotional resonance appreciation of art finds its home.


As an artistic vessel of meaning, dance has always had its own ways of expressing human emotions. The combination and contrast of dance and shanshui painting has all the elegance and beauty of a poem; Shan Shui attempts to awaken paintings of ancient scenery of mountains and water that have slept for thousands of years, and depict their spiritual world with dance of eastern essence, transcending time. In this assemblage of dance, poetry, painting, philosophy and traditional art, artists and audience can seek rare authenticity by looking for their inner self. When they enter the theatre, audiences will experience the lush and vibrant colours of Shan Shui’s brushwork.


In this extraordinary time of the pandemic, there have been significant constraints on conditions for rehearsals and training; every performance on stage has become precious. I would like to express my heartfelt wishes for Shan Shui’s success; for it to bring a valuable artistic experience to audiences, and for the art of dance to flourish even under the most demanding circumstances.



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Qin Fanluo

Cultural journalist, screenwriter, working in film, theatre, performing arts creation and research


(照片由香港舞蹈團提供 Photo provided by Hong Kong Dance Company)




《山水》Shan Shui: An Ode to Nature

香港舞蹈團 Hong Kong Dance Company

導演/編舞:楊雲濤 Director / Choreographer: Yang Yuntao


演出場次 Performances:

2021年5月21日至5月22日 19:45 21-22 May 2021 19:45

2021年5月22日至5月23日 15:00 22-23 May 2021 15:00