In The News

March 21, 2013

These Inadequate Words: Katie McMillan on TAO Dance Theater

Check out the full Harbourfront Centre blog post at this link.  Flipping through the program a few minutes before the opening of last night’s performance by TAO Dance Theater, I read the following: “Choreographer Tao Ye believes a single word or phrase is insufficient to summarize a work of contemporary […]
March 19, 2013

TAO Dance Theatre program at Harbourfront cutting edge

Check out the full article in The Star at this link. Cynics occasionally quip that it’s oxymoronic to talk of Chinese “modern dance.” They argue that what passes for modernity in Chinese dance today looks positively quaint and derivative compared with what’s happening in North America and Europe, or, closer […]
March 5, 2013

Chinese and overseas arts serve and return

Check out the full article from China Daily at this link.  More international audiences have seen the works of Chinese performing artists, thanks to the efforts of Ping Pong Productions. The Beijing-based art management company has been exposing youngChinese artists to oversea viewers through tours, collaborations and teaching residencies. Founder […]
February 12, 2013

US Artistic Ambassador to China: Ping Pong Productions’ Alison Friedman

Check out the full article on the Asia Pacific Arts site at this link.  Even The New York Times sometimes falls prey to American journalism’s tendency to twist stories about China to fixate on dramatic tales of government corruption and censorship. In November 2011, L.A. Theatre Works collaborated with Ping […]
September 25, 2012

American Cultural Center Tours (ACCT) Marks New Chapter of Sharing American Culture in China

Sep, 25, 2012, Beijing, The People’s Republic of China: The United States Embassy in Beijing announces The American Cultural Center Tours (ACCT) Program, a new initiative to bring American performing artists to tour 12 American Cultural Centers based in universities across China. These performers will serve as cultural ambassadors to […]
July 26, 2012

TAO Dance Theater, Lincoln Center Festival, New York

Check out the full Financial Times article at this link.  China came late to modern dance – and nothing is as deadly as a recent convert’s earnest faith. So when the programme declared that Beijing choreographer Ye Tao, of the five-year-old TAO Dance Theater, “eschews representational modes of dance” even to […]
July 26, 2012

The Strength of (Small) Numbers

Check out the full New York Times article at this link.  TAO Dance Theater, appearing at Alice Tully Hall as part of the Lincoln Center Festival, is both dance and theater. Though the two pieces on its program tell no stories and express humanity only in impersonally collective ways, both have […]
May 16, 2012

方美昂艺术不分东西

  Check out the full 时代周报 article at this link.    一个美国丽人,身穿中国大花旗袍,她跟我们分享的不仅是视觉的美。她就是方美昂,以中美文化交流大使的身份作客广州,开讲中国现代舞,吸引了满座的中国舞者。她说,艺术不分东西。对中国文化的向往,是对自我的发声,对个性的追求,使她向往现代舞,因为现代舞追求最自由的身体。 10年前,她曾来中国考察现代舞,一个偶然的机会,让她对中国的现代舞着迷。10年后,“不要看不懂:如何欣赏和理解现代舞”的讲座在中国举行。方美昂以流利的中文诉说着她对中西现代舞艺术史的理解和对中国源远流长的艺术史的着迷。(文/张淳 刘婷) 现代舞是“哈姆雷特”   千人千解讲座上,方美昂着装优雅,却偶尔也会摆几个搞怪的现代舞姿势,幽默夸张引得台下笑声不断。她接受采访时说,“很多人认为文化交流大使应该是严肃的,正经的,但是我觉得幽默、充满活力的人才能架起文化交流的大桥,这样才能走进异国朋友的心中。”她笑着说,“其实我很喜欢自由,也喜欢交朋友,在我的朋友圈里,有着来自五湖四海,性格迥异的人,接触这些朋友,可以跟不同的思想碰撞出火花,从新的角度去感知这个世界。” 她不仅在中国国际广播电台当任过主持人,还被著名音乐家谭盾相中,担任了一年经理人。在谭盾工作室,她见识了交响乐团和戏剧与舞蹈团迥然不同的工作氛围。“他们排练严格按照时间表,多一分钟都不行”,她说,谭盾是她很佩服的音乐家,“因为他已经达到一种艺术和生活、工作合而为一的状态。” 方美昂喜欢主动思考,她不赞同人们为艺术而艺术,为了故作深沉而到剧场观看现代舞,她说,“现代舞在中国发展得很不错,创作手法不断推陈出新。人们从一开始对现代舞的排斥,慢慢转变为接受和欣赏。但是,由于现代舞这一艺术形式的特殊,也导致了人们对现代舞只知其名,不知其内涵。”为此,方美昂分享了她个人的观点,“在欣赏现代舞蹈过程中,带着自己的思维和感受,多问问‘Why not?为什么不呢?’,比如说,在舞台上,导演为什么选择这首背景音乐,而不是另一首呢?”方美昂解释说,其实现代舞就像哈姆雷特,有一千个观众就有一千种对现代舞的解读,所以将自己融入到现代舞蹈中,你才能拥有自己的思考和看法,否则只能是雾里看花,越看越迷糊。 探索东方文化  从中文到舞蹈爱好广泛的方美昂不仅喜欢研究中国现代舞,还很喜欢中国的文学史。“在美国读书的时候,觉得中文跟英文是两个完全没有交集的语言,所以当时很想挑战一下自己,就选择了学习中文的课程,”方美昂说。那时她便开始接触到中国的文学史、话剧、表演艺术的领域,从而在更深的思想层面上感受与美国文化不一样的中国文化。 开始步入中国现代舞圈子其实是一个很偶然的机遇。方美昂说,“当时在北京的CNN当实习记者,一次采访让我接触到了北京现代舞蹈团。在团队里和演员们一起上课,一起排练,重新找回了现代舞的感觉,同时开始对北京现代舞团队产生了很大的兴趣。比如说,北京有多少个舞蹈团队?发展的情况?都是我很想深入了解的文化史”。后来回到美国布朗大学,方美昂获富布莱特奖学金的资助来到北京,研究中国现代舞的发展。十年后的今天,她不仅在中国和海外教授中国现代舞的历史,甚至成立了一个乒乓策划团队,作为中西方艺术文化的交流平台,促进相互了解,在艺术文化上都有更进一步的交流和学习。 展望中国现代舞的未来,方美昂给予很高的寄望:“美国的现代舞发展历史悠久,风格各异,约有500多种;中国的舞蹈风格和肢体语言也有着自己的特色,在未来几年会发展得很不错。”她同时鼓励了中国现代舞的爱好者和学习者,“如果你选择了你自己热爱的现代舞,请跳下去,它会是一道绚丽的人生风景!”
April 16, 2012

中国需要了解现代舞 这是时代决定的

Check out the full China Daily Article This article was AT the this Link.  In 2002, when the American girl party first came to the United States expensive Chinese, started modern dance studies, when the vast majority of Chinese people still do not know what modern dance is. “I told […]
April 13, 2012

Performers dance to a different tune

Check out the full China Daily article at this link.  When Alison Friedman first came to China in 2002 on a Fulbright fellowship to research modern dance, local residents had little idea what it was. “Most people would say, ‘Oh, you mean hip-hop?’ or ‘You mean disco in a bar?'” […]
March 21, 2012

Artistic Director of Beijing Modern Dance Company to do residency at Brown

Read the full Brown.edu article at this link.  In March 2012, Gao Yanjinzi, artistic director of the Beijing Modern Dance Company will spend three weeks as artist-in-resident, working with students in the New Works/ World Traditions performance troupe.  Ms. Gao will teach students a piece which will then be performed […]
March 8, 2012

现代舞在中国蓬勃 发展自己的语言

Check out the full New York Times Article at this Link.  Beijing Contemporary Ballet dancers and the new generation of lightweight Shanxi rural rustic country musician, wearing old indigo robes, holding a hand with a wooden support from the mask – they shouted, blowing whistles, jumping, just as It is behind […]
March 1, 2012

Modern Dance Comes Into Its Own in China

Check out the full New York Times article at this link.  Lithe, fresh-faced dancers from the Beijing Dance Theater and weathered farmer-musicians from a rural area of Shaanxi Province — costumed in worn indigo robes and carrying handmade masks on wooden sticks — shouted, whistled and leaped as shadow puppets […]
February 22, 2012

LATW presents: Top Secret China (Video)

December 9, 2011

THE PENTAGON PAPERS, THE PRESS, AND BEIJING

Check out the full New Yorker article at this link.  In the annals of Chinese journalism, this has been a revealing couple of weeks. The Committee to Protect Journalists released its annual report on Thursday, and, for the first time in several years, China has ceded its claim as the […]
December 5, 2011

PKU cancels talk after free speech play

Check out the full Global Times article at this link.  Peking University (PKU) cancelled the post-performance discussion after a play based on a historic US First Amendment litigation debuted on its campus. Top Secret: The Battle for the Pentagon Papers, produced by L.A. Theatre Works,California, US, dramatized the epoch-making moments […]
December 4, 2011

American Play Centered on Free Speech Tours China

Check out the full Voice of America article at this link.  Top Secret: The Battle for the Pentagon Papers is not a new play, but it just completed its premiere tour in China. When should the government exercise its right to protect state secrets? When do a nation’s citizens have […]
December 3, 2011

In Beijing, you just can’t chat about things “Top Secret.”

Read the full Shanghai Scrap blog post at this link.  This morning we receive the surprising news (as related in the New York Times) that the producers of “Top Secret,” a play about the Pentagon Papers and press freedom, could go ahead with a performance in Beijing last night, but […]
December 3, 2011

Pentagon Papers still causing controversy 40 years on (in China)

Check out the full New York Times article at this link.  A play about the struggle between a free press and government is one thing. A discussion about that play is yet another order of magnitude, as the producers of L.A. Theatre Works’ “Top Secret: The Battle for the Pentagon […]
December 2, 2011

Chinese Allow Play on Pentagon Papers, but Not a Talk About It

Check out the full New York Times article at this link.  BEIJING — As far as dramatic timing goes, the text message from the powers that be announcing the sudden cancellation of a post-performance discussion of “Top Secret: Battle for the Pentagon Papers” was, well, perfectly timed. The message, sent […]