THE process of making art is as important as the final product itself, says KongsiKL producer Doris Quek.
Hence, six local dancers and musicians were invited to take part in a four-day improvisation laboratory with Singapore's T.H.E. Dance Company.
"It is absolutely exciting when we learnt that T.H.E Dance Company is making Kuala Lumpur as the first stop for its Southeast Asia Tour," says Quek.
The dance group will be performing Hollow From The Other Side: Body Lab on Nov 23-24, while the improvisation workshop with the local performers will be a site-specific piece echoing the concept of Hollow Body.
"Hollow Body is a methodology based on improvisation used in The Human Expression (T.H.E.) Dance Company to help performers recognise the different states of the mind, heart and body in movement," says Quek.
"Through simple exercises which release unnecessary tension, one seeks to tap into a deeper understanding of the individual self. Learning how to produce and channel organic energy in its sincerest form is central to the concept of Hollow Body; the consciousness of evoking movement and impulses from deep within the body to create new expression," she adds.
THE SIX PACK
The six performers are dancer-choreographer Hwa Wei-An whose dance journey has taken him to different countries for several events and productions.
Apart from contemporary dance, Hwa continues his training in hip-hop, b-boy and tricking.
Yoga teacher, dancer, choreographer Lee Jia Xi has worked professionally with the Royal New Zealand Ballet and Singapore Dance Theatre, and currently performs as well as teaches ballet and contemporary dance.
Dancer-choreographers Lee Ren Xin and Choo Tee Kuang will also take part.
Dancer-teachers Hoi Cheng Sim and Lim Pei Ern along with musician Kent Lee and lighting designer-theatre director Tan Eng Heng round off the chosen six performers.
The music side is handled by multi-instrumentalist Kent Lee, a lead vocalist, bassist and principal songwriter for a local band, who has toured several countries with ambient electronic artist Flica in the past few years.
COMMUNICATION AND COLLABORATION
Lee says: "This is an experiment to see how artistes from different backgrounds and disciplines come together to create something in such a short period of time. Through the four day improvisation lab, the Hollow Body will be a way to help in their communication and collaboration. We are taking the initiative to host the phenomenal Singaporean dance group to celebrate the spirit of 'kongsi', as we think idea and skill sharing are a crucial processes for self-improvement, which is not just beneficial to the participating artistes but the local arts scene as well.”
He adds: "KongsiKL is a non-profit art space run by architects, designers and artists who all have day jobs, but got together to embrace the idea of sharing. We believe in nurturing the communal spirit by sharing space, time, skills and resources and art, committed to make it accessible.”
The 929 sq metre-big KongsiKL is an old warehouse at the junction of Kuchai Lama and Old Klang Road.
"Kongsi Kolab is an initiative by the Kongsi KL community to cultivate cultural and creative vitality by connecting people to accomplish something bigger. Opening its doors for people from different disciplines, Kongsi KL acts as an accessible platform for experimental works, promoting spirits of discovery that resonates with new and experienced artistes and makers alike," he says.
GET THE FEELS
The public can witness the workshop, on Nov 21-23, and the improvisation result will be presented on Nov 23-24, along with two other pieces from T.H.E Dance Company, Pure and Present at 8.30pm.
"All are welcomed to witness the dialogue between the artistes from Malaysia and Singapore, who are meeting for the first time, during the improvisation process.
"Although the four-day improvisation process is short, the audience can definitely expect the best from these outstanding artistes from both countries,” says Quek.
She adds: "Contemporary dance is like an abstract painting where the physique, technique and expression has to be balanced. It usually appears as if there is no obvious narrative and what it communicates is determined largely by the observer themselves. Perhaps the audience can start by learning that not all artworks are to be understood, but to be felt."
Hollow Body improvisation lab (open for public viewing)
Where: KongsiKL,Gudang Yee Seng 2, Taman Goodwood, Jalan Klang Lama, KL
When: Nov 21-23, 3.30pm-6pm
Free entry, donations welcomed.
Hollow from the other side: Body lab (led by T.H.E Dance Company)
When: Nov 23-24, 8.30pm
Entry by minimum donation:
RM60 / at the door
RM80 / with wine
For details, email [email protected] or call 018-280 5232 (whatsapp)