（原文刊於2012年的第十四冊第一期Originally published in dance journal/hk 14-1 in 2012. This is a translation of the Chinese article, not a transcript of the interview done in English)
本文根據Franck Boulègue和瑪麗莎．海斯（Marisa C. Hayes）的一場演講寫成。該演講於2011年10月24日在香港演藝學院（演藝）舉行，由演藝和香港舞蹈聯盟共同製作。
瓦斯拉夫．尼金斯基（Vaslav Nijinsky）於1913年創作的芭蕾舞《春之祭》不僅是舞蹈史上最重要的轉捩點之一，還是今天的當代製作中一股持久的國際性力量。這舞蹈號稱擁有長長一列著名的編舞家，包括舞蹈先驅瑪莎．葛蘭姆（Martha Graham）、莫里斯．貝嘉（Maurice Béjart）和翩娜．包殊（Pina Bausch）等。其情節中那永恆主題，和伊戈爾．斯特拉文斯基（Igor Stravinsky）的《春之祭》音樂，吸引了數以百計的舞蹈藝術家重新創作，並把自已的動作詞彙和文化背景賦予其中。近年的製作中，出現了舞踏（butoh）、hip hop和莎莎舞蹈（salsa）之類不同舞蹈形式，而在地點上，也有以美國西南部、原住民時期的澳洲和西非等地作為演出的背景。同樣獨特的新版本每年都繼續亮相。
《春之祭》最初是為謝爾蓋．達基列夫（Serge Diaghilev）的巡演舞團俄羅斯芭蕾舞團（Les Ballets Russes）而創作。該團一直被公認為20世紀最偉大的芭蕾舞團之一，並培育了不少有才華的藝術家，其中包括年輕時的喬治．巴蘭欽（George Balanchine）。在成立之初，該團由俄羅斯帝國芭蕾舞團（今天的馬林斯基劇院）的舞者組成，其中包括著名的塔瑪拉．卡爾薩維納（Tamara Karsavina），米歇爾．福金（Michel Fokine）和瓦斯拉夫．尼金斯基。在《春之祭》之前，達基列夫這個年輕的舞團已經表演了一些前衛新作，包括舞蹈史上的另一個試金石、1912年尼金斯基的第一支芭蕾舞創作《牧神的午後》。這些作品展示了新的動作、視覺藝術和音樂形式，為創新和跨界形式的演出創造了機會，對芭蕾舞和現代舞的發展都產生了巨大影響。 俄羅斯芭蕾舞團在巴黎和其他歐洲首都引起公眾轟動，也有個別的醜聞。達基列夫對此並不反感，並認為那對業務有利。在這些醜聞之中，最臭名昭著的是1913年5月29日，在巴黎香榭麗舍劇院《春之祭》開幕式上爆發的騷亂。
Vaslav Nijinsky (first leftt) in the original The Rite of Spring in1913
當年，尼金斯基的非正統編舞和斯特拉文斯基的原始新音樂震驚了觀眾；現在，它們往往被視作為現代作風的誕生，開創了藝術創作的新時代。斯特拉文斯基和該芭蕾舞的設計師尼古拉斯．洛里奇（Nicholas Roerich）受到一些俄羅斯於基督教前的圖象所啟發，為《春之祭》建立了場景。他們的意念圍繞著一個異教徒儀式，並以一個年輕少女「被選者」（Chosen One）在獻給春天之神的祭祀中舞至身亡為終結。儘管尼金斯基本身是一位受古典訓練的舞者，但他為《春之祭》編舞時卻打破了傳統，並要求舞者雙腳內轉（女性不用足尖站立）、跌倒在地板上，並演出一些從來沒看過的動作，被大多數觀眾認為是對這藝術形式的橫蠻侮辱。在那災難性首映後不久，倫敦《每日郵報》援引了尼金斯基的話說：「我被控以違反優雅之罪……有些繪畫和雕塑的流派一直越來越文雅圓滑，直到全無達意能力而只剩下平庸；這時，總會有反抗的出現。也許類似的事情已在舞蹈中發生。」即使是演出者，也討厭尼金斯基的作品，並威脅要辭演。他們不僅對編舞感到不滿，也對複雜的音樂、幾乎所有小節都改變節拍的編排完全感到沮喪。
The Rite of Spring (1959) by Maurice Béjart
這種二元性是存在於《春之祭》眾多版本中的一種共同趨勢，包括德國編舞家Raimund Hoghe的近期作品。在這個簡約的演出中，貫穿全舞是一雙雙對比鮮明的舞者，尤其重要是由成熟的編舞者和年輕得多的女舞者組成那青年和老年（出生和死亡）一對。娜泰莉．維亞（Natalie Weir）那受澳洲原住民影響的《春之祭》，最近被香港芭蕾舞團重排。編舞者對戀愛和配偶相關儀式的興趣，類似於貝嘉所自陳的慶祝「男女之間的差異」。Heddy Maalem的版本中，西非舞者與日出和日落的影像並置，利用一天來隱喻生命力（黎明）和致命暴力（夜幕降臨）兩個對作品有同等重要性的概念。卡洛塔．池田（Carlotta Ikeda）的全女性舞踏團Ariadone定期演出由舞團創辦人Ko Murobushi編排的《春之祭》。其配樂包括斯特拉文斯基原作音樂的選段，特別強調了最戲劇性的部分，再加上傳統的日本音樂和海浪聲，對前者帶來了一種令人平靜的對比。音樂中的這一選擇，反映了演出對在生死過渡的最後時刻中所出現的生、死二元力量的探索。與大多數作品相比，居於美國的華人編舞者沈偉創作了迄今最抽象的《春之祭》。雖然完全去除了情節，但通過幾何對比，在舞蹈編排上保持了微妙的二元性，例如，早段的面向內的圓形後來對映出面向外的圓形，這呼應了幾乎所有《春之祭》版本都探索的二元論和循環的大自然這兩個反覆出現的主題。
Hunt(2002), Tero Saarinen
無論是Hodson / Archer重構的尼金斯基《春之祭》原作，還是對這作品的多個全新詮釋，都繼續在全球各地對文化產生巨大影響，而且沒有減弱的跡象。像尼金斯基一樣，當代編舞家繼續在他們的藝術中尋找普世真理，在原始的層面上尋找真實而原創的表達方式的泉源，探索活著之意義，探索作為人類而同時亦是在更大的生命網絡中之一部份的意義。
This article is based on a lecture given at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts (HKAPA) on October 24, 2011 by Franck Boulègue & Marisa C. Hayes, co-presented by the HKAPA and the Hong Kong Dance Alliance.
The creation of Vaslav Nijinsky's 1913 ballet The Rite of Spring is not only one of the most defining moments in the history of dance, it is also an enduring international force in contemporary production today. The ballet boasts a long line of celebrated choreographers including dance pioneers Martha Graham, Maurice Béjart, and Pina Bausch, to name a few. Attracted to the timeless themes found within the plot and Igor Stravinsky's musical score for The Rite of Spring, hundreds of dance artists have reinvented the production, infusing it with their own respective movement vocabularies and cultural backgrounds. Dance forms as diverse as butoh, hip hop, and salsa have appeared in recent productions, while locations, such as the American Southwest, Aboriginal Australia, and West Africa have all been featured settings for the performance. New and equally distinct versions continue to debut annually.
While these productions vary widely in their aesthetics and each choreographer's treatment of the thematic content, new versions of The Rite of Spring retain consistency through their use of Stravinsky's score and references to the original ballet's overarching motifs. For this reason, The Rite of Spring is a unique phenomenon within contemporary dance, a form known for its focus on individualism rather than a common repertoire. Ballet companies, for instance, often feature classic standards, which are frequently re-staged and re-imagined. Their audiences are familiar with the repertoire's music and subject matter, but it is much rarer to find the equivalent of such wide-reaching ballets in contemporary dance. Over two hundred contemporary dance versions of The Rite of Spring have been documented, underlining the fact that contemporary dance choreographers have never embraced another musical composition or plot with quite the same magnitude. In doing so, audiences have been given the rare opportunity to develop an intimate relationship with a contemporary dance piece's themes and score via multiple presentations. The universal subjects and essential questions linked to life cycles in The Rite of Spring resonated with artists and audiences throughout the course of the 20th century and continue to do so nearly one hundred years after the ballet's inception.
The Rite of Spring was originally created for Serge Diaghilev's itinerant company Les Ballets Russes, which would go on to be recognized as one of the greatest ballet companies of the 20th century and foster talents such as the young George Balanchine. In its earliest years, the company was composed of dancers from the Imperial Russian Ballet (today's Mariinsky Theatre), including celebrated figures Tamara Karsavina, Michel Fokine, and Vaslav Nijinsky, among others. Prior to The Rite of Spring, Diaghilev's young company had already performed a handful of new avant-garde productions, including, in 1912, Nijinsky's first ballet The Afternoon of a Faun, another touchstone in the history of dance. These productions showcased new forms of movement, visual art, and music, creating opportunities for innovative and interdisciplinary forms of performance that had a tremendous impact on the development of both ballet and modern dance. Les Ballets Russes caused a public sensation in Paris and other European capitals, as well as the occasional scandal, to which Diaghilev was not averse and considered good for business. Of such scandals, the riot that erupted during the opening performance of The Rite of Spring on 29 May, 1913 at Paris' Theatre des Champs Elysees is the most infamous.
Serge Diaghilev (left) and Igor Stravinsky (right), black and white photograph, Spain, 1921.
© Victoria & Albert Museum, London
Audiences were shocked by Nijinsky's unorthodox choreography and Stravinsky's primal new music, both of which are often cited as the birth of modernity, ushering in a new era of artistic creation. Stravinsky and Nicholas Roerich, the ballet's designer, developed the scenario for The Rite of Spring inspired by images of a pre-Christian Russia. Their idea centered around a Pagan ritual that ended with a young maiden, the "Chosen One", dancing herself to death in a sacrifice to the god of Spring. Although he was a classically trained dancer himself, with his choreography for The Rite of Spring, Nijinsky broke with tradition and called for dancers to turn their feet inward, (off pointe for women), fall to the floor, and perform other movements that had never been seen before, which struck most viewers as a savage affront to the art form. Quoted in London's Daily Mail newspaper shortly after the disastrous premiere, Nijinsky said, "I am accused of crimes against grace... There have been schools of painting and sculpture that went on getting suaver and suaver until there was no expression but only banality left; then there has always come a revolt. Perhaps something like this has happened in dancing". Even the performers loathed Nijinsky's work and threatened to quit. Not only did they resent the choreography, they were utterly frustrated with the complicated music, a composition that changes meter with almost every measure.
Although it may have been difficult for audiences to fully experience Stravinsky's striking score for The Rite of Spring during the ballet's first performance (witnesses recall that noise in the theater became so overpowering, the dancers were unable to hear the orchestra and Nijinsky frantically shouted musical counts from offstage), it has gone on to become one of the most recognizable and influential pieces of music in modern history. With a strong range of commanding sounds, from its driving percussive rhythms to its dissonant harmonies, The Rite of Spring continues to sound fresh today, nearly a century after its debut. It is often labeled a self-referential composition, indicating that the music is difficult to place within a developmental timeline, unlike most works of art that evolve gradually from one historic period to the next.
Although it is possible to trace certain aspects of Stravinsky's complex score to other musical traditions, his radical cacophony of sound is overwhelmingly unique and unlike anything that preceded or followed it. This lends the music of The Rite of Spring a certain elasticity in that it is not inherently tied to any specific era or culture, allowing choreographers of diverse backgrounds the opportunity to explore it freely outside the confines of a pre-existing context. In addition to the universality of the music, the original ballet's central themes of ritual. natural cycles. violence and sacrifice are features of all societies past and present. an important factor in understanding the wide appeal that The Rite of Spring has acquired across continents.
Ritual, or a symbolic set of actions. was a theme embraced by French choreographer Maurice Béjart for his creation of The Rite of Spring in 1959. In his version, a fertility rite is the focus of the performance. danced by two divided groups of male and female performers. Although the choreographer's earthy movements recall the primal nature of the original ballet, the entire cast's neutral-colored body suits allow the work to remain free of any culturally-specific time or place. Furthermore, Béjart's ritual of renewal is not based on an historic ceremony, but rather inspired by archetypes found in Jungian and Eastern thought. The choreographer did not segregate the genders as an act of conflict, but rather as the representation of dual forces like Yin and Yang, with equal but separate powers that form two parts of a greater whole. Béjart's version ends with the joining of the male and female pair. through which renewal is achieved. in much the same way that the death of Nijinsky's Chosen One results in a return to order, the continued life force of Spring.
This sense of duality is a common current found in many versions of The Rite of Spring, including a recent production by German choreographer Raimund Hoghe. In his minimalist performance. contrasting pairs are illustrated throughout, particularly that of youth and old age (birth and death), via the mature choreographer's presence alongside a much younger dancer. Natalie Weir, whose Aboriginal-influenced version of The Rite of Spring was recently reprised by The Hong Kong Ballet, was interested in rituals linked to love and mating, similar to Béjart in her self-proclaimed celebration of "the differences between the male and female". Heddy Maalem's West African cast juxtaposes the image of sunrise and sunset within a version that utilizes the metaphor of a single day to capture both the life force (dawn) and deathly violence (nightfall), equally essential to the piece. Company Ariadone, Carlotta Ikeda's all female butoh ensemble, regularly performs a version of The Rite of Spring choreographed by the company's founder Ko Murobushi. Its soundtrack includes excerpts of Stravinsky's original score, with a particular emphasis placed on the most dramatic portions, paired with traditional Japanese music and the sound of ocean waves, both of which offer a calming contrast to Stravinsky. This choice in music reflects the performance's exploration of the dual forces of life and death found within the final moments of transition between the two. In contrast to most productions, Shen Wei, an American-based Chinese choreographer, has created the most abstract version of The Rite of Spring to date, eliminating its plot entirely. A subtle sense of duality is maintained in the choreography, however, through geometric contrasts, such as an early inward-facing circle later mirrored by an outward-facing circle, echoing the recurring themes of dualism and cyclical nature explored in nearly all versions of The Rite of Spring.
Celebrating 100th years of The Rite of Spring (2013), The Hong Kong Ballet
The rising tensions found in The Rite of Spring score and plot are well suited to the theme of violence, including conflict on multiple levels: group, individual, and socio-political. Some historians even suggest that the original 1913 production foreshadowed the outbreak of World War I, capturing an underlying sense of upheaval that Europe would soon face. Pina Bausch's celebrated version, which premiered in 1975 and was recently featured in Wim Wender's film Pina, openly addresses the violence in gender relations, chiefly the exploitation of women. The theme of conflict within The Rite of Spring is often intertwined with that of sacrifice, as Bausch demonstrates through the alienation of her Chosen One, who remains the focal point of the performance. In contrast to the original version of the ballet in which the Chosen One surrenders to her fate, it is important to note that Bausch's sacrificial victim contests her role. The duration of the Chosen One's final solo is a moving outcry until her eventual collapse and demise on the earth-covered stage. Her dance symbolizes both the loss of an individual and in turn, an entire gender.
The Rite of Spring (1978) by Pina Bausch
Finnish choreographer Tero Saarinen's production entitled Hunt, is a solo version of The Rite of Spring that explores what it means to be both the hunter and the hunted, a rumination on violence at the individual level, interior complexity and aging. Saarinen has even likened his performance to the life cycle of a dancer, one in which most artists offer great sacrifices, including that of their own body. Perhaps this analogy is yet another reason dance artists feel so drawn to The Rite of Spring; the piece encapsulates their own deep knowledge of the human body's natural cycles, in addition to the concepts of sacrifice (themselves) and ritual (the act of dance).
Both the Hodson/Archer reconstruction of Nijinsky's original The Rite of Spring and multiple new interpretations of the production continue to have an enormous cultural impact across the globe and show no signs of waning. Like Nijinsky, contemporary choreographers continue to search for universal truths in their art, to find the source of an authentic and original mode of expression on a primal level, exploring what it means to be alive, to be both human and part of a broader web of life.
編輯手記 Editor's Note
The Rite of Spring premiered in 1913 on the eve of the First World War. Today, more than a hundred years later, it is not only a page in history that we read about in textbooks, but an ageless, living work which is constantly being re-staged, adapted, and re-created in different versions and forms. Last year, three local versions were staged in Hong Kong, and internationally, its appeal has never subsided. The historic first performance of The Rite of Spring at the Théatre des Champs Elysées in Paris challenged the traditions of classical ballet, subverted the prevailing aesthetics, and caused uproar and heated discussion. Describing the piece as "often cited as the birth of modernity, ushering in a new era of artistic creation,” this article introduces readers to several adaptations of the work and analyzes their respective themes. As we republish it again today, it is our hope that we too can ride the waves of history and move forward without hesitation in this chaotic era.
客席編輯Guest Editor: 劉秀群Cathy Lau Sau Kwan ｜ 翻譯Translation：施德安 Cecil Sze