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15th hk arts development awards_舞蹈手札  67

[中][Eng] 放眼舞林An Eye on Dance



Group photo of Taiwan Dance Platform Open Talk participants.

Photos provided by Wei-Wu-Ying Center for the Arts.

攝影Photo Credit:陳長志 Chen Chang-Chih



2016 Wei-Wu-Ying Arts Festival: 1st Taiwan Dance Platform



Recently, a number of new arts venues in Asia have been inaugurated, such as the Asian Culture Complex located in Gwangju, Korea, Shanghai International Dance Center, and the National Taichung Theater, with more coming in the next 5 years.  It’s rare for an arts venue to present programs before its inauguration, but the Kaohsiung Wei-Wu-Ying Center for the Arts is one that has. This November, I was invited to attend the 1st Taiwan Dance Platform Performance Program and Open Talk Series organized by the Center. Although still in the final phase of construction, soon its various venues will include an Opera House, Concert Hall, Lyric Theater, Playhouse, Recital Hall, and an Outdoor Art Plaza, which, when completed, will make it the largest art complex in Asia.




This opportunity to attend the platform in Kaohsiung was attractive. Even though the dance community in Hong Kong has frequent exchanges with Taipei counterparts, they are infrequent with those elsewhere in Taiwan. Objectively, I noticed that most of the participating artists and companies were from Taipei and only a few were based in Kaohsiung.  This situation triggered a series of questions about the relationship among artist, venue, and audiences; the ecology of artist and dance company; the relationship between audience and venue; and, audience development.




Photo taken during the construction of Wei-Wu-Ying Center for the Arts.


Photo provided by Mecanoo Architecten B.V.







Since the expectation of the platform producer was the promotion of Taiwanese contemporary dance and to connect it with various Asian networks, the focus, therefore, had an Asian context. The Open Talk series started off with the topic, “The Contemporary Dance Scene in Taiwan” followed by a roundtable discussion that explored the Southeast Asia dance context with a closing discussion, “Why Asia Matters and How”.  On the other side, the Dance Platform included two theater performance series and outdoor performances. It invited a number of professional dance producers and curators from Southeast Asia, Australia, America, Britain, and Europe.  Among all the programs, I was draw to the roundtable discussions that invited producers and curators from Singapore, Philippines, Malaysia, Cambodia, and Indonesia and introduced the development of dance and its influence through the perspectives of historical, economical, and geographical environments, respectively.  This mode of group discussion allows an in-depth understanding of the differences of each participant and their options for exchange.  The discussion was on how Southeast Asian countries develop new languages of contemporary dance from artistic traditions while at the same time investigating differences among Asian countries in regards to political, historical, geographical differences and their multicultural landscapes, in other words how do artists and curators interpret ‘Asia’?  How to connect the diverse dance networks in Asian and how do they affect the development of arts in Asia?  






Many reflective questions emerged from the process that are worth pondering, such as why Asian countries favor exchanges with Europe and America? Whether that is evidence of colonialism? Is the term ‘Asian’ limited to developed East Asian countries? Has Asia been confined to the ‘Asia’ defined by the West? Can it contain a wider range of other regions? What is the ‘Asia’ we talk about? And finally, whether Hong Kong or the West Kowloon Cultural District will be able to curate Hong Kong's dance platform or promote Asian dance networks? I think it is worth a try!


Taiwan Dance Platform Chemistry II – Dripping (excerpt), Choreographer: Luo Wen-jinn (Taiwan).

Photos provided by Wei-Wu-Ying Center for the Arts.
攝影Photo Credit: 陳長志 Chen Chang-Chih


臺灣舞蹈平台之《第一類化學反應》—《Play me》(選段),編舞:董怡芬(台灣)。
Taiwan Dance Platform Chemistry I - Play Me(excerpt), Choreographer: Tung I-feng (Taiwan).

Photos provided by Wei-Wu-Ying Center for the Arts.

攝影Photo Credit: 陳長志 Chen Chang-Chih




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