MAU : J ~ ASEAN Dance Collaboration
CultureLink was appointed by the Japan Foundation as the Singapore co-producer for the Japan-ASEAN dance production marking the 40th anniversary of Japan-ASEAN relations in 2013. This collaboration, funded and presented by the Japan Foundation, weaves the dance traditions of Indonesia, Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and Japan in new perspectives. The joint production toured four ASEAN capitals 5 – 29 Nov 2013.
MAU 舞うweaves a vibrant dance tapestry with threads drawn from from Kelantanese makyong dance(Malaysia), Mindanao folk dance (Philippines), Balinese traditional dance (Indonesia), Japanese kabuki dance, and Chinese liyuan opera from Singapore. Choreographer Fujima Kanjuro VIII, the Grandmaster of the famed 300-year old Fujima School of Kabuki Dance, laces MAU with kabuki leitmotifs.
This special collaboration revels in the interplay of multiple Asian dance forms. Through the theatrical techniques and artistic effects of kabuki, one of the most sophisticated art forms of Japan with over 400 history, MAU embraces and frames the diverse elements into a unified whole while maintaining the individual aesthetic and intrinsic value of each dance tradition. Together with dancers and musicians drawn from the leading arts groups of their home countries, Kanjuro creates a dance adventure full of elegance, drama and wit.
Commissioned by the Japan Foundation to mark the 40th anniversary of Japan-ASEAN friendship, MAU (meaning ‘to dance‘ in Japanese) celebrates the rich tapestry of Asian dance traditions in a modern setting.
Soke-Fujima-Ryu (Fujima School) (Musicians: Umeya Tomoe, Umeya Ukon)
Soke Fujima-ryu has a history dating back 300 years. Its Grandmasters have been choreographers for the Kabuki theatre, and have choreographed some of the most well-known and beloved classics of Kabuki dance.
At 22, Fujima Kanjuro VIII succeeded as the leader of the Fujima school in 2002 and became the heir to a family that has long been known as leading Kabuki furitsuke-shi (choreographers) of the traditional Japanese dance Nihon buyo. His grandfather, Fujima Kanjuro IV was the highly acclaimed choreographer and dancer who was eventually designated a “Living National Treasure” by the Japanese government. Mr Kanjuro is the recipient of the prestigious New Artist Award in 2003 conferred by the Minister of Education and Science.
LKB Saraswati) (Indonesia)
The Saraswati Bali Arts Foundation was established by the Directorate of Art and Culture, Ministry of Education in 1968 to promote the study, training and performance of Balinese arts. It has since trained closed to 5,000 Balinese dancers and presented more than 1,500 rounds of performances both at home and abroad.
ASWARA Dance Company (Malaysia)
ASWARA Dance Company is a professional dance company that specialises in traditional and contemporary Malaysian dance performance and choreography. The company has received innumerable national dance awards for performance and aspires to become a unique force for dance with a distinct Malaysian identity. ASWARA Dance Company is now a shining example of Malaysia’s plurality danced through its repertoire and the ethnicity of company members.
Airdance (Philippines) Formed in 2001, Airdance is a Philippine Contemporary Dance company committed to providing a nurturing environment for creativity and excellence in dance. The company is a product of the coming-together of dance artists of varied backgrounds from classical and modern ballet, to jazz and ballroom, to hip-hop, breakdance, martial arts and gymnastics. It is this synergy, geared towards a contemporary dance, that makes Airdance one of the country’s most pioneering dance companies.
Siong Leng Musical Association (Singapore)
Siong Leng Musical Association was established in 1941 to preserve, develop, and promote Nan Yin (which literally means “The Music of the South”) – one of the treasures of traditional Chinese musical arts and Li Yuan opera. One of Singapore’s oldest cultural assets, Siong Leng today preserves and adapts the ancient spirit of Nan Yin with a modern touch, gaining it a new generation of followers, and raising its performances to new heights and onto the international stage.
9-10 Nov 2013 : Taman Ismail Marzuki, Jakarta
16-17 Nov 2013 : Cultural Centre of Philippines, Manila
22-23 Nov 2013 : Istana Budaya, Kuala Lumpur
27-28 Nov 2013 : Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore
Celebrating 40 Years of ASEAN-Japan Friendship