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Publication Date : 14-03-2013
The Goethe Institut presents Thai and German contemporary dance
Continuing a collaboration that began in January with "Fire, Fire, Fire", which brought down the curtain on World Performances @ Drama Chula's "Our Roots Right Now" festival, the Goethe Institut and 18 Monkeys Dance Theatre will present two more productions this weekend and next, "Lieber Adzio" and "Dancing to the End".
Choreographer Jitti Chompee of 18 Monkeys says that "Lieber Adzio" greatly differs from last year's "Demon in Venice", performed in a swimming pool.
"I was inspired by the film 'Death in Venice' back then, and so my choreography was based on the film - it's like I created a dance version of the film. This time, I focused more on the boy Adzio who only shared a glance with the writer and yet inspired a classic novella.
In that single moment, it seems that they communicated with each other and, personally, I think the boy played along with the writer. Years later, he discovered that a novella was written based on him and I think he must have been very proud. And so I imagined myself as Adzio in such situations and created this work accordingly."
Jitti also notes that although the leading dancer in his company Anucha Sumaman is an artist at the National Theatre "many audiences watching him in this work may not notice his classical Thai dance background and his movements have been through phases of transformation".
Jitti also reteams with composer Dirk P Haubrich who recently worked with him on "Muet".
"Thanks to the generous support from the Goethe Institut and the Ministry of Culture's Office of Contemporary Art and Culture, he's been here for five weeks now and our collaboration has progressed very well. He was an artist-in-residence at Mahidol University and worked with classical Thai musicians at the National Theatre and Burapha University. He's collected a wide variety of music and mixed it into his composition."
The venue is now a black box theatre, and Jitti is working with Japanese set deigner Yoko Sayama, while the lighting is designed by Jirat Eaimsaard, Jitti's, as well as Pichet Klunchun's, long-time collaborator.
As for "Dancing to the End" by the Berlin-based Total Brutal, artistic director Nir De Volff notes, "Death is part of life and not simply a void into which we drop. History of art feeds us with endless fragments and images of death. Death images are part of our daily life, part of our need to fear and construct our identity."
De Volff and his company members, who've been in Bangkok for a few weeks now, is creating this new work as they've been inspired by "classic or pop music mixed with private and national images from Western culture".
He gives some cultural symbols: "The Dying Swan" from "Le carnaval des animaux" performed by Anna Pavlova; "The Green Table" by the German choreographer Kurt Jooss from the 1930s; and Beethoven's Fifth Symphony (first movement).
"Lieber Adzio" is on Saturday at 7:30pm and Sunday at 2 and 7:30pm, and "Dancing to the End" has the same schedule on March 23 and 24 at the Sodsai Pantoomkomol Centre for Dramatic Arts, sixth floor, Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Building at the Faculty of Arts, Chulalongkorn Universty in Bangkok.