AFX - ASIAN FESTIVALS EXCHANGE
Contact Contemporary Dance Festival 2013, d'Motion International Dance Festival, Seoul Dance Collection, Guangdong Dance Festival and Yokohama Dance Collection
Esplanade Theatre Studio/Tuesday
AFX is a triple-bill of exchanges and collaborations between the local Contact festival, which is presented by T.H.E Dance Company and several other festivals and collections in Asia.
The night opened with 0 (Zero), a collaboration between the local festival, d'Motion International Dance Festival (Malaysia), and Seoul Dance Collection (Korea).
The four-man piece was the weakest of the night, with uneven pacing marring the beauty of the work's raw, soft lighting.
Throughout the performance, set to an electronic din of static and whines, the ensemble interacted with two hanging lamps, each fitted with a dim orange bulb.
As the dancers wielded the lamps, illuminating each other and bathing the stage in a quiet glow, the performance took on an almost meditative quality.
However, the piece felt like it lost its way mid-way and several times, the audience thought it had ended, only to have the light rise again.
The second piece of the night, Unsettled, was an exchange between the host festival and Guangdong Dance Festival (China). It was a hypnotic solo by Xu Shuiliang, who was the standout performer of the night.
It started off with Xu dragging a white ribbon diagonally across an empty stage, from downstage left to the opposite corner. When he pulled it tight, the ribbon looked like a tightrope in the middle of the stage.
As he moved, the stark line was his guide and also his prison.
Slowly, he began to use more ribbon to trace two outlines of human bodies on the floor.