OzAsia has launched its full programme. There’s a distinct Singapore focus with performances, exhibitions, a Singapore Now film programme and more, alongside Australian premieres of works from China, Japan, Indonesia and elsewhere in Asia. Taking place in Adelaide from 21 September – 8 October 2017, OzAsia Festival is Australia’s premier international arts festival focusing on Asia.
Among the highlights:
- Hotel (28-30 September): An epic, multi-generational drama that takes place over 100 years of Singaporean history – all from the vantage point of a famous but unnamed luxury hotel. Follow the Singaporean transformation from British colony to Malaysian state to sovereign nation as experienced by people, not history books. A ground-breaking theatre event, HOTEL is a five-hour performance in two parts, old and new, eastern and western, traditional and modern. National identities, lives and empires both die and rise against the dramatic backdrop of a shrinking world.
- Shifting Permanence (7 September – 7 October): the Australian premiere of this Chinese performance art exhibition. The Chengdu Blue Roof Museum is one of the most outstanding centres for contemporary art in China. Founded in 2003, the museum has grown into a commune for contemporary artists and has accumulated one of the most significant collections of contemporary art in China. This selection of work from Chengdu Blue Roof Museum reveals how contemporary artists are engaging with the rapidly changing Chinese landscape through performance art, installation, photography and video art.
- The End | Keiichiro Shibuya & Hatsune Miku: Vocaloid Opera (3-4 October). Experience the world’s first virtual opera, performed by cultural phenomenon Hatsune Miku, a vocaloid singer and one of the biggest popstars in the world. With a collection of more than 100,000 songs to her name and a world-wide legion of fans, Miku will perform her first ever opera The End as a feature event at OzAsia Festival. Conceived and composed by acclaimed Japanese composer Keiichiro Shibuya, an avid fan of Miku, The End pushes the artistic boundaries of Miku’s popstar status. Plunging into a world of self-examination, Miku wrestles with her identity as a perpetually ageless 16-year-old, questioning whether she is like other humans, and whether she will ever experience death.
- Until the Lions (22-23 September): the Australian premiere of Akram Khan’s latest production. In this lean and powerful dance-theatre production, the story of princess Amba is revisited from a female perspective, more relatable to modern audiences. Abducted by the powerful warrior Bheeshma, Amba is rendered unmarriageable. Invoking the power of the Gods, she seeks her revenge against the mighty Bheeshma. Incredible dance and compelling storytelling with a Pan-Asian cast from Indonesia, Taiwan and the Philippines.
- After Utopia: Revisiting the Ideal in Asian Contemporary Art (22 September – 1 December): from Singapore Art Museum, this selection of work under the theme of After Utopia brings together select pieces from Singapore, Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, India and China. Centred around our ceaseless human endeavour for perfection, After Utopia explores our ideals and innermost yearnings through moving image, installation, painting and sculpture. It will rouse within you that gnawing sense that our world and its realities are not enough. Enjoy this triumphant collection of diverse artistic practices from Southeast Asia.
- The Dark Inn (3-4 October): Internationally renowned Japanese theatre auteur Kuro Tanino makes his Australian debut with his acclaimed masterpiece The Dark Inn. A puppeteer and his dwarf father arrive at a mysterious bath house in the secluded mountains of northwest Japan after receiving a request to perform their travelling show. However, on arrival, it appears no one made the booking. As the quirky characters staying at the inn emerge from their rooms to learn more about the new visitors, the setting becomes a metaphorical site for the inner recesses of the mind. A place that exposes our misunderstanding – and secret desires.
- Writing China (8 October): OzAsia Festival partners with Open State to present a day-long series of transcultural, transmedia events. Writing China is a literary banquet of sound, text and image from Australia and Greater China.
In another collaboration with Brisbane Festival, this Sep – Oct period will see possibly the largest number of artists from Singapore presented to the Australian public.