Choreographer and CalArts alumna Wang Yuanyuan (Dance MFA 03), takes the East Coast by storm this week as she and the Beijing Dance Theater (BDT) present the U.S. premiere of Haze, a work that explores the socio-economic, environmental and political changes of modern-day China through metaphor, which links pollution with spiritual confusion.
The production opens tonight and runs through Oct. 22 as part of the BAM Next New Wave Festival 2011 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, and then moves to the Kennedy Center next week for a two-night stint on Oct. 26-27. Members of BDT will also hold a master class at the Kennedy Center on Monday, Oct. 24.
[Haze] addresses the unsettling effects of recent economic and environmental crises by literally destabilizing her dancers, setting them on a bare stage covered in thick sponge mats as they struggle to keep their balance. Divided into three chapters and set to music by Henryk Górecki and electronic act Biosphere, Haze powerfully illustrates the uncertain progress of the individual in times of seismic change beyond his or her control. At the same time, in a kind of creative paradox, the foam’s cushioning effect enables the dancers to accomplish certain physical feats that would otherwise be impossible.
Wang, one of the most acclaimed dance artists and choreographers in China, founded BDT in 2008 with Han Jiang (lighting designer) and Tan Shaoyuan (set designer), establishing China’s first contemporary ballet troupe. The company’s 19 ballet-trained dancers blend Chinese cultural traditions, classical ballet and modern dance.
As part of BDT’s whirlwind tour, Wang will be feted at a private reception held by CalArts Trustee Joe Cohen and the Institute’s Board of Overseers in New York on Oct. 20.
Beijing Dance Theater with choreography by Wang Yuanyuan
2011 Next Wave Festival
BAM Harvey Theater
651 Fulton Street, Brooklyn
Oct. 19-22 at 7:30 pm
2700 F St., NW, Washington, D.C.
Oct. 26 – 27 at 8 pm