Thursday, October 16, 2014

舞评 02: 'Ancient Inscriptions' A Review by Chin San Sooi

Scintillating. Dua Space continues to thrill with its latest presentation Ancient Inscriptions choreographed by Anthony Meh  and Aman Yap. Its was an evening of precision and power , of rhythm and flow of movement, of contemplation and meditation and breathless exhilaration.

The internal dynamics of the scholar meet the external energy of the dancer. In bringing
the calligraphic virtuosity of the master calligraphers and the trained body of the modern dancers, an entertaining cultural fusion of an ancient art form and a contemporary movement is realized.

The delights are manifold especially in the section on Han Calligraphy.  Was it the venerable ancient inscriptions bathing on the playfully responsive dancers or was it the dancers thoughtfully weaving their way through the presence of erudite scripts? Most absorbingly delicate was the moment when script and dancer were at one responding to each other.  We stopped seeing. We were at one in the moment. A suspended epiphany.

The pulsating rhythms of sounds was sometimes full of high octane energy, coupled with over exuberant visuals especially in the opening number Jia-Gu Wen which  did not sit well with yours truly. The tribal character of the warring states did not always manifest itself in the body movements of the dancers.  When sound and rhythm worked, the evening was suffused with magic.

Outstanding was Aman Yap, lead dancer.  His body extensions and magnetic presence
commanded attention.  The other dancers complemented with their exuberance and

In the last chapter, in honouring renowned local calligrapher, Sim Mow Yu, the employment of the cane and extended silence, held yours truly spellbound especially in the section of the five elements.  The rhythm of movement with continual flowing lines
expressed constant change as the only constant.

Dua Space’s Ancient Inscription is an inspiring piece in which the fecundity of
the mind of the ancients inspires the restless creative spirit of  to-day’s mind
to reveal the Power of the Imagination.

Chin San Sooi

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