[中][ENG] S.E.T. Dance「創.舞」向前 ‘S.E.T. Dance’ Forward

環亞舞略

Dance Curating in Asia


陳君明博士 (照片由「O」劇場當代舞機構提供)




S.E.T. Dance「創.舞」向前


文:陳君明博士

翻譯:Raven Ching


「綜合」在現今的新常態之中,一直是熱門詞,尤其自2020年1月,冠狀病毒2019全球大流行使世界陷於亂局。世界經濟不景氣,全球各行各業均受影響,對藝文界別影響甚鉅,打撃尤為深重。現場表演和活動皆被取消或者叫停。劇場必須閉館,或是按最低觀眾量來營運。全球各地皆要執行社交距離措施,且限制曠日持久,動搖了藝術界持份者和觀眾的信心。經歷以上苦況,舞蹈節、演出和活動這類必須親身參與,包含社交互動的營運模式正處於水深火熱之中。為減輕對藝術行業生計的威脅,藝術作品和節目都極度依賴數碼媒介作傳播,數碼媒介也成了藝術產出的主要來源。任何藝術節要得以成事,就必須採用嶄新、具創意的節目編排手法。於2021年1 月14至30日期間正式舉行的首屆創.舞系列(SET),正好回應這全新的挑戰。SET為「O」劇場當代舞機構旗下的「O」劇場舞蹈支部的出品。SET補足了新加坡其他著名的當代舞蹈節,例如2001年創立的新加坡「O」當代舞蹈節、和2004年創立的聚.舞國際舞蹈節。


SET代表場地(Site)、充權(Empowerment)與轉化(Transit)。本舞蹈節旨在善用合適的平台,展示一系列作品,成為專業藝術家的助力,讓他們以創意方式分享和呈現他們的藝術作品。最終目標是為舞蹈提供新的框架,透過融匯了綜合模式的多元化節目,吸引新的觀眾和持份者。是次舞蹈節為新加坡最新的大型舞蹈推廣活動,它亦正好趕上新加坡政府於2020年12月28日起推行的第三階段重新開放措施,容許更多社交活動恢復。


SET為新加坡的舞蹈發展奠下新的基礎,它以簡單直接的節目結構,表達出三條節目路線的具體概念。這三條路線分別是表演、導演對話與大師班。SET把握線上的契機,開發在現實或數碼空間中策劃演出的可能。同時也鼓勵以冒險精神,去探索虛擬空間怎樣影響與觀眾的互動,並衍生新的藝術詮釋和作品。安全距離的要求,影響了傳統的劇場體驗模式,種種隨數碼媒介而生的新選項如:串流直播、使用戶外場地、還有「重製」以往作品,亦衍生出新的表演類型。終究,我們不是只專注為觀眾提供傳統的劇場體驗,而是要策略性地發展「內容」,能夠具有吸引、鼓勵和凝聚全球各地舞蹈社群的潛力,藉以引導大家以不同維度去欣賞當代舞。


SET給予所有獲邀的導演創作自主,讓他們自行選擇作品,決定作品的表達形式,以及作品呈現與再現的媒體平台。SET 2021之陣容,包括六位「O」劇場當代舞團的聯席藝術總監。他們在SET分享的作品,展現各人在舞蹈風格、編舞手法和舞台視角上的獨特見解。經驗與背景各異的國際導演,包括金永哲(南韓)、Roberta Ferrara(意大利)和Raffaele Irace (意大利/德國),以及新加坡導演羅佩思、王彬祺和吳鎮豪,他們對藝術的想法,形成有趣的集合。他們豐厚而富有開創精神的藝術探索,拓闊了研究和探索的角度,使觀眾能更深入地參與其中。從不同規模和風格的作品,觀眾得以獲取新的見解和具脈絡的知識,並認識到藝術家們的文化背景。綜合以上各種手法,可謂是針對藝術家及其作品作更「個人化」的推廣方式。如此努力突顯出藝術家們的個性,驅動著今次舞蹈節「開放」、「耳目一新」和「直接」的精神。

(照片由「O」劇場當代舞機構提供)


SET正在「轉化」。這正正是我們所相信,改變的重要功能。我們認知到SET將成為我們這時代的紀錄,在為表演、對話與大師班所設的綜合平台上,紀錄知識的傳遞,並藉此反映其所帶來的改變。我們必須接受、並順從轉變的步伐,讓舞蹈節能夠妥善地適應、推進,在時代的流轉中,團結著它的追隨者與舞蹈社群。以數碼網絡及平台發佈作品,對藝術作品之傳播裨益深遠,必須加以善用。僅倚靠「現場」表演以吸引觀眾參與實體劇場體驗,或受限於高昂成本以及無法安心的公眾情緒,使人懷疑這種形式能否長期維持,以及接觸環球觀眾。在這個新科技時代中尋找新的意義與關聯,已成為逼切的議題,舞蹈節或需考慮長遠的可持續性和國際聯繫,打進新市場去建立新的觀眾群。


總結而言,SET創.舞系列的策劃銳意採用新的綜合營造模式。專注於展現編舞家的才華與造詣的同時,大幅提升國際觀眾的深度參與,正是這個新舞蹈節誕生的目的。SET舞蹈節的策展過程揭示一種新的思考過程,以新意念配合具影響力的節目架構,在經已過載的網上空間中競爭。節目編排必須是流動、彈性而富有創意,方能滿足在我們這個充滿不確定性年代的需求。雖然可利用新科技獲取有形的藝術成果,但讓觀眾重拾劇場中人性化的體驗,仍然挑戰重重。SET所展示的,不僅僅是一場舞蹈節的成敗,亦無關於規模大小,而是敢於嘗試新形式,以大規模網上行銷強化觀眾參與,冀以此在危機之中重振各方持份者之信心和興趣。這是對舞蹈的新的展望,振奮我們、連繫我們,讓舞蹈向世界出發。



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陳君明博士

新加坡「O」劇場當代舞蹈機構總裁,創團藝術總監




‘S.E.T. Dance’ Forward


Text: Dr. Danny Tan

(Photo provided by Odyssey Dance Theatre Ltd)


“Hybrid” has been a buzz word in this New Normal, with the world being disrupted by the global pandemic – COVID-19 – since January 2020. With the gloomy state of world economies affecting all industries around the globe, the enormous impacts on the arts and culture sector have been extremely detrimental. Live performances and events have been cancelled or put on hold. Theatres have been either shut down or have had to operate with minimal audience capacity. The confidence of arts stakeholders and audiences has been shaken, with safe distancing measures being put in place in all countries for a prolonged period of time. This painful episode has placed the operational mode of festivals, shows and events that require social interaction and physical attendance in an endangered condition. To counteract the threat to arts livelihoods, heavy reliance on digital means for the presentation of artistic works and programmes has become the key source for artistic output. For festivals to be viable, new and innovative programming approaches must be adopted. The inaugural S.E.T. Dance Series (SET) officially took place between 14 and 30 January 2021 to respond to this new challenge. It was presented by ODT Dance, a division of Odyssey Dance Theatre Ltd. SET complements other established Singapore contemporary dance festivals such as Xposition ‘O’ Contemporary Dance Fiesta and DanzINC – International Dancers & Choreographers’ Residency Festival, which were founded in 2001 and 2004 respectively.


SET is the acronym for Site, Empowerment and Transit. It aims to showcase a series of works on viable platforms, empowering professional artists to share and present their art through a creative approach. The goal is to provide a new framework for dance, hoping to attract new audiences and stakeholders through diverse programming, which is an amalgamation of a hybrid mode. This is the latest major dance promotion in Singapore, which coincided with Singapore Government’s moves to Phase 3 of ‘Reopening’ from 28 December 2020 onwards, allowing more resumption of social activities.


SET creates a new basis for the advancement of dance in Singapore. Through simple and direct programming structures, specific ideas on three programming tracks, namely Performances, Directors’ Conversations and Masterclasses, have been communicated. SET also opens the potential for shows to be curated in real or digital spaces, taking advantage of online opportunities. Risk-taking has been encouraged in terms of how virtual space may affect interaction with audiences and inform new artistic interpretation and offerings. With safe-distancing measures affecting the traditional mode of experiencing theatre, new options like ‘live-streaming’, the use of outdoor sites and the ‘remaking’ of old works through digital means have offered a new variety of shows. Ultimately, we are not just focusing on offering audiences the traditional mode of experiencing theatre, but also strategically working on ‘contents’ which have the potential to attract, encourage and assemble the global dance community who may thus appreciate contemporary dance in multi-dimensional ways.


SET gives autonomy to the invited directors to decide their choice of works, delivery format and media platforms for presentation and representation. For SET 2021, six Associate Artistic Directors of Odyssey Dance Theatre were profiled and their works shared to exemplify their respective unique propositions in terms of dance styles, choreographic approaches and staging objectives. With diverse experience and backgrounds, international directors Kim Yong Chul (South Korea), Roberta Ferrara (Italy) and Raffaele Irace (Italy/Germany), together with Singaporean directors Lo Pui Sze, Linnea Ong and Calvin Goh, provided an interesting mix of artistic voices. Their rich and enterprising artistic quests could be studied and explored in a broader sense, supporting deeper engagement with the audience. Works with a variety of scales and styles have allowed the audience to gain new insights and informed knowledge, as well as learn about the cultural background of the artists. These concerted efforts have resembled a more ‘personal’ approach towards the promotion of the artists and their works. It is this specific effort to bring out the personality of the artists that has driven the festival’s spirit as ‘open’, ‘refreshing’ and ‘direct’.

(Photo provided by Odyssey Dance Theatre Ltd)


SET is in ‘transit’. It is the key function of change that we believe in. We acknowledge that SET will be a document of our time that reflects the changes brought about through the transfer of knowledge at hybrid platforms for shows, dialogues or masterclasses. We need to accept and allow the flow of change for the festival to readily adapt, progress and unite its followers and the dance community over time. Far-reaching benefits in the circulation of artworks by means of digital networks and platforms must be harnessed. Relying solely on ‘live’ performances as a means to draw audiences into a physical theatre experience may be limited due to high cost and the insecurity of public sentiment, giving rise to questions of long-term sustainability and global reach. Finding new meanings and relevance in this time of a new technological era has become urgent, so that festivals may call for long term sustainability and global connection, opening new markets for new audience development.


In conclusion, S.E.T. Dance Series shows the commitment to embrace a new hybrid mode of operation in its curation. While staying focused on showcasing the talents and artistry of choreographers, deepening the engagement with global audiences in an exponential way is what this new festival has been created for. SET has revealed a new thinking process behind festival curation, importing new ideas with impactful programming structure to compete within the overly crowded online spaces. The need for fluid, flexible and creative programming is essential to meet the demands of our uncertain times. While harnessing new technology to reap tangible artistic outcomes, the need to restore the humanistic side of theatre experience for audiences remains a challenge. What SET has shown is not about failure or success in presenting a festival, nor its scale and size, but rather the spirit of trying a new format to advance audience engagement through extensive online marketing features, hoping to regain the interest and confidence of diverse stakeholders in the midst of crisis. It is a new prospect for dance that excites and bonds us to set dance forward globally.



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Dr. Danny Tan

CEO & Founding Artistic Director, Odyssey Dance Theatre Ltd. (Singapore)

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