Cloud Gate Dance Theater of Taiwan: Wild Cursive

Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan produces works that combine traditional Chinese body disciplines such as martial arts with modern dance, creating an unusual fusion of Eastern and Western styles. During its last local visit, the group performed "Cursive," named the best dance of the year by the New York Times, and now they return with this 2005 work, the third in a trilogy exploring how movement responds to the elegant flow of calligraphy. In "Wild Cursive," choreographer Lin Hwai-min draws upon "wild calligraphy" for inspiration. This form is considered the pinnacle in Chinese cursive aesthetics and is filled with free spirit, allowing the writer to express emotions without limitation. The dance reflects this absence of boundaries as it unfolds amid an all-white set. Carefully calibrated streams of black ink mark large sheets of rice paper in the background. Natural sounds, including the hums of cicadas and gusts of wind, enhance the open environment, one in which the dancers are able to find the wildness deep within themselves while reflecting the unpredictable trajectories of the ink. It's a truly integrated visual and visceral aesthetic experience.
Sat., Oct. 13, 8 p.m., 2007

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