“Dance New Air” festival is a new international dance event for Tokyo, established as the successor to the Dance Triennale Tokyo held in Aoyama district since 2002. It is a 2014 international arts exchange program of Japan’s Agency for Cultural Affairs.
In its first edition running September 12 – October 5 2014, this new dance festival will feature eight collaborative works shown at Aoyama Round Theatre and Spiral Hall. The festival will last for 24 days, and also features a variety of other dance-related programs, including outdoor performances in the Piloti space at Children’s Castle, screenings of dance films at Theatre Image Forum, a dance book fair at the Aoyama Book Center main store, dance workshops, artists in residence and showings of their works in progress.
A form of expression preceding words in human history, dance continues to thrive globally as an art form to exploring further possibilities of bodily expression today. Artists around the world are facing diverse realities in different environments. They connect freely with each other and exchange ideas and thoughts on the issues facing humanity, then meet for face-to-face discussions that lead to powerful, innovative works of dance. The first edition of Dance New Air will focus on such collaborations among artists, transcending the borders of countries and disciplines, in an earnest attempt to explore new horizons in this field of physical art.
The festival will feature eight works by young stars of the choreography scene as well as workshops, dance film screenings and a book fair. Three of the works on the program are world premieres, including The Red Shoes, a cross-over work of art, dance and theater created through a collaboration of the contemporary artist Nicolas Buffe, choreographer/director Shuji Onodera and actress Hairi Katagiri and a collaboration between Japan’s Akiko Kitamura and Yudi Ahmad Tajudin and other Indonesian dancers titled To Belong / Suwung.
Also on the program is the solo-work collaboration on the themes of family and children titled Project Pinwheel, with choreography and performance by Esther Balfe (UK), Young Doo Jung (Korean Republic) and Shigemi Kitamura (Japan).
Other works include Zan Yamashita’s collaboration with Korea’s Ahn Aesoon Dance Company to restage his representative work IT IS WRITTEN THERE; the newest work by Algerian-French choreographer and dancer Nacera Belaza titled Les Oiseaux (Birds); and the Japan premiere of a work by France-based Cecilia Bengolea and François Chaignaud in collaboration with two DJs to present a collage of various forms of disco dancing. Also presenting recent pieces are foreign-based Japanese dance artists Kaori Ito (presently based in Belgium) and Shintaro Oue (presently based in Sweden). Work in progress performances from a Romania-Japan residency exchange project will also be on the programme.