AAARI Benefit Dance Performance
Yin Mei Cursive:
I Dance To Keep Things Whole
Art by Wei Ligang

Date: Monday, January 23, 2006

Time: 7PM to 8PM

Place: Elebash Recital Hall, CUNY Graduate Center
365 Fifth Avenue, Manhattan (Corner of 34th Street)
 

 

Contemporary Chinese-American choreographer and performer, Yin Mei, presents a new work-in-progress, Cursive: I Dance To Keep Things Whole. Conceived in collaboration with Chinese artist, Wei Li Gang, the new work is a return to a Chinese essence through a study of line as produced in the ancient art of Chinese calligraphy.  At once deeply personal and highly abstract, Cursive is presented in its current incarnation as a full-length solo performance event.

 

With a choreographic style using Chinese energy direction and spatial principles as a doorway into experimental modern dance, Yin Mei’s work has been lauded by the New York Times and Village Voice respectively as “haunting” and “dreamlike – real yet unreal, vivid yet somehow misted in beauty.”  Calligrapher cum painter, Wei Li Gang is one of China's most distinguished young artists of contemporary calligraphy, whose work has been shown all over China and at such international venues as the British Museum in 2002.

 

Cursive is a rediscovery of the most basic principles of presence in time and space, summoning the immediacy of Chinese calligraphy’s cursive or ‘crazy grass’ style in its transcendence of the limitations of form and perception.  Cursive is an exploration of ink, paper and body- the basic elements that go into Chinese calligraphy.  Using a “proto-cultural” choreographic approach, the dance addresses these elements, not in their formal aspects as tools of language, but in their raw, physical nature.  The flowing line of ink on paper is dance.  The dance in turn embodies the power of cursive writing and the spirituality inherent to Chinese civilization.

“I am trying to uncover the essence of Chineseness,” comments Yin Mei about her latest project.

“Cursive is a return to what is most simple; it is a rediscovery of the stillness that contains all action, and vice versa.  The dance channels the cursive calligraphy: it is about spirit, inner spirit and outer shape, shape and color and texture that comes to manifest what is inward.”

 

The solo work is a meditation on the artist’s love for China’s ancient culture.  It marshals the full range of the cursive style, from delicate to apocalyptic, driven by a score including selections by Arvo Pärt and Henryk Gorecki.

“I don’t want to give any answers and say ‘this is the essence of China,’ because it is something that cannot be articulated in words or gesture.  What I want is to create a space into which people can enter and find it for themselves.”

 

 

 


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Dance Benefit Committee
Frances & John Bologna
Wellington Z. Chen
Susan Einhorn
James Muyskens
Ralph Samuelson
Pearl Tam

Dance Benefit Contributors
Pearl Tam ($2,000)
Ralph Samuelson (200)
Frances & John Bologna ($100)
Annie Koshi ($100)
Edward Ma ($100)
Harenda Sirisena ($100)
Susan Wong ($100)
Nehru Cherukupalli ($50)
S. Lakshminarayanan ($50)Loretta Chin ($20)

Hong Li ($10)
Brian Schwartz ($10)

Coordinator
Luisa Wang

Technical Assistance
Antony Wong
 

 
  
 
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