Just because you’ve got two left feet doesn’t mean that you can’t appreciate what the Esplanade da:ns Festival has to offer. inSing speaks to one of the festival’s programming officers, Faith Tan, to find out exactly why you should sit up and pay attention to Singapore’s premiere annual dance festival. Plus you can also win tickets to the da:ns festival. Keep on reading to find out how!
There’s something for everyone
The Esplanade da:ns Festival boasts a mind-boggling variety of dance forms and dance performances since its launch in 2006. “It was the first time Singapore has had a dance event of such scale and range – a 10-day dance festival featuring close to 100 free and ticketed performances by over 600 artists showcasing different dance forms from traditional ballet to hiphop and flamenco to contemporary dance,” says Faith.
Giselle (October 16 – 17)
This is a quirky re-interpretation of the romantic ballet Giselle by contemporary dance icon Mats Ek. In 1982, the Swedish choreographer took the revered Romantic ballet Giselle and retold it for the contemporary world, bringing in complex psychological themes and ideas. This bold work is performed by the renowned Lyon Opera Ballet from France.
Uprising/In your rooms – A Double Bill
Choreographer Hofesh Shechter has taken the UK by storm with his inventive works that exude both rugged energy and poignancy. This double bill shows a thrilling, chaotic, fragmented world, with choreography influenced by cool hip hop vibes, and packed with powerful driving rhythms.
In Your Rooms
Refractions – A Double Bill: As Above, So Below/Nameless
A collaboration with the Singapore Dance Theatre and Esplanade, this performance brings together the works of two outstanding Asian choreographers, Edwaard Liang and Xing Liang. Inspired by Asian philosophies in different ways, Liang’s As Above, So Below is loosely based on the Buddhist notion of ‘bardo’, the world in between heaven and earth, while Xing’s Nameless is inspired by the classic Tao Te Ching.
You’ll be helping to support local talent
“To help our local and Asian choreographers create new works, we commission a new work each year at the festival and have a dedicated artist-in-residence programme,” Faith reveals, ”This year’s artist-in-residence is daniel k (aka diskodanny) who will be working with another local dancer Ming Poon, lighting designer Fujimoto Takayuki (aka Kinsei) and sound artist Chong Li-Chuan to present a commissioned piece entitled Hokkaido (Or Somewhere Like That), taking place on October 8 and 9. In addition, da:ns festival also provides LASALLE College of the Arts and the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA) dance students with a public platform to present and hone their skills.”
Read our interview with Hokkaido's performer danielk now!
It will help instill a love of the arts in your young ones
The festival has expanded the annual free programme, Rasas, a traditional Asian dance programme held at the Esplanade Outdoor Theatre. “This year, we are putting the focus on children,” Faith explains, “In traditional Asian dance, children as young as five years old learn difficult exercises that shape their bodies preparing them for the intricate dance movements for their classical dances. Rasas presents the rare opportunity to watch spectacular large ensemble dances by both adult and young children dancers from Bali and Cambodia. Our first ever dance-related craft workshop will also be held at the festival this year, where participants will get to recreate the masks they see in the performances in a mask-making workshop, including the new Rasas Workshops for Parents and Children.”
Inspired after watching a dance performance? Pick up some nifty footwork!
Looking for a fun way of getting fit? Why not sign up for a dance class? From capoeira, hiphop, to flamenco and even popping ‘n’ locking, the public is now spoilt for choice with Footwork, a series of introductory dance classes designed for adults, youths and families. “We have now expanded the Footwork dance workshops to a year-round programme series catered for dance lovers across all age groups. To engage a wider community – people who may not get the chance to experience dance otherwise – we have also created specially tailored dance workshops for some of the Voluntary Welfare Organisations (VWOs) that we reach out to,” says Faith, “da:ns also supports local dance studios by inviting them to teach the dance workshops, and encourages the participants to continue learning dance in their studios.”
Check out the rest of the festivals happening in the month of October.
The Esplanade da:ns Festival 2010 is taking place from October 8 – 17. For a detailed listing and schedule, go to www.dansfestival.com
Here’s your chance to win a pair of tickets for:
Uprising/In your rooms by Hofesh Shechter Company on Friday Oct 8, 8pm (worth $86) or
Refractions by the Singapore Dance Theatre on Saturday Oct 16, 3pm (worth $66).
All you need to do is answer this question:
How long is the Esplanade da:ns festival on for?
Submit your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org with the following details:
1) Name (as in NRIC)
3) Mobile number
This contest is now closed.
Congratulations to the 2 lucky winners to win tickets to da:ns festival!
Here're the winners:
1) Name: Mastura Binte Jumali
NRIC : SXXXX788E
2) Name: Deve Soh Kok Meng
Esplanade will be contacting you on how to collect your tickets!