Choreographic brief

This DANSCROSS 2009 project is part of a long-term collaborative initiative involving the Beijing Dance Academy and ResCen Research Centre at Middlesex University. In 2009/10, it brings together some of the world’s most talented and versatile dancers and eight choreographers responding to the creative challenge of the ‘box’ – a set of constraints designed to test Stravinsky’s proposition that the more restricting the rules you have, the more freedom you achieve; a concept replicated by the Chinese character for ‘crisis’ which contains a representation for ‘crisis’ coupled with a representation for ‘opportunity’.

The challenge to choreographers – the ‘box’ is constructed of a fixed creative period of 12 days, a maximum performance allowance of 10 minutes, the use up to six dancers and the requirement to address the concept of Dancing in a Shaking World. The results may not represent a finished product but will offer an insight into the ways that choreography develops, presenting a staging point in the creative process. From the test of the ‘box’ may come responses as diverse as a series of doodles, a statement of intent, the framing of a starting point or a single concept, a distilled haiku, half of a small gem… or?

The intention is to create a store of ideas that will be available for further development over the timespan of this initiative with work being presented and debated in both the UK and Asia.

Shobana Jeyasingh (UK Artistic Director Shobana Jeyasingh Dance Company, ResCen Research Associate)
John Utans (Australia/Hong Kong freelance choreographer and Hong Kong Academy for the Performing Arts)
Kerry Nicholls (UK freelance choreographer and co-director of creative learning, Random Dance)
Jonathan Lunn (UK freelance choreographer)

Zhang Yunfeng
Zhao Ming
Wang Mei
Zhao Tiechun

Academic Documentors/Cartographers:
Dr Paul Rae (Assistant Professor National University of Singapore)
Dr Janet O’Shea (Associate Professor in the Department of World Arts and Cultures,USA)
Dr Anita Donaldson (Dean of Dance, HKAPA)
Professor Emilyn Claid (Professor of Choreography at University College Falmouth, Dartington Campus)

Zhang Ping (Assistant Director of Editing  of Dance Magazine)
Mu Yu (Associate prof. of BDA)
Liu Chun (Vice-researcher of CNAAR)
Pan Li (Associate Prof. of BDA)
Luo Bin (director of Research Institute of Dance Study, CNAAR)
Tong Yan (Lecturer of BDA)
Jin Hao (Associate Prof. of BDA)
Liu Xiaozhen (Vice-researcher of CNAAR)