The 60-year-old Japanese Koma, left, dances alongside the dancing painters, dressed in traditional Cambodian clothes. (Courtesy of Novel Hall)
Friday, May 15, 2009
By Paul Nieman
Special to The China Post (Taiwan)
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Tonight Cambodian Stories, the first performance of the tenth anniversary of the Novel Dance, will take place in the Novel Hall in Taipei. The performance will run through the weekend.
The dance's choreography was created by Japanese dancers Eiko and Koma, who feature in the play along with several dancing Cambodian painters. They are painters, so they have already had the 'inward eye,' Eiko explains, so it wasn't that hard for them to use their knowledge of the human body to perform well with the dancing. Cambodian Stories is about love, loss and hope, three topics that are very recognizable for the players of the piece, of whom most are affected by the low standards of life and the troubled history of Cambodia.
The painting dancers have only performed abroad in the United States so far. Taiwan is the second country in their international campaign. The dancers will paint on stage during their performance, making it a unique combination between painting and dancing.
“These young artists are full of dreams, just like everybody else. Everybody has dreams, even old people such as Eiko and me, and we are 57 and 60,” Koma said. Since participating in the performances, they do not only paint the traditional style that they have learned to paint, but just whatever they want to paint. Later on in the novel dance series there will be Wayne McGregor's Random Dance in Entity from May 22 through May 24 and the 10-year-old El Yiyo, who will star in the New Flamenco Generation from June 5 to 9, both at the Novel Hall in Taipei City.