Expect an eloquent, engaging experience as founder, artistic director and choreographer Lin Hwai-min’s ongoing quest for enlightenment is exquisitely embodied onstage by a company of captivating dancers.
Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan’s 24 dancers receive training in meditation, Qi Gong (an early form of breathing exercise), martial arts, modern dance, ballet and calligraphy.
Named after the oldest known classical dance in China and celebrated as the very first contemporary dance company in any Chinese speaking community, the Cloud Gate dancers are renowned for their poetic quality of movement.
They each possess exceptional control and articulation of their limbs and are just as thrilling when they are suspended in pensive stillness as when they are demonstrating their virtuosity. In performance, these dancers exude the contentment and focus found at the heart of all spiritual teachings.
Having explored many paths throughout his career, Hwai-min found divine inspiration with a journey he made to Bodh Gaya in India. As the place where Buddha is said to have obtained enlightenment, Hwai-min felt compelled to visit. Whilst there, he revelled in a quietude he had never experienced before.
Hwai-min’s blissful reflections upon his own pilgrimage and concurrent explorations of Asian religious rites resulted in the creation of Songs of the Wanderers.
A work about the practice of asceticism, the calm fluidity of an idyllic river and the pursuit of tranquillity, Songs of the Wanderers premiered on 4 November 1994 at National Theater, Taipei (Taiwan).
It has proven to be a truly timeless work, remaining as one of Hwai-min’s most enduring and emotive compositions. The production has toured to more than 20 countries and is widely regarded as a masterpiece.
In Songs of the Wanderers, the dancers’ evocative movements are set to a soundtrack of Georgian folksongs sung by the Rustavi Choir. A simple but striking set – which includes an astonishing three tons of shimmering golden grains of rice falling to the floor – completes Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan’s visually stunning tribute to spiritual pilgrimage.
Distinctly Asian in its imagery, yet with powerful relevance far beyond any geographic boundaries, the production promises to touch spectators’ hearts with joy and emotion.
|What||Cloud Gate Theatre of Taiwan, Songs of the Wanderers|
|Where||Sadler's Wells, Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4TN | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Angel (underground)|
04 May 16 – 07 May 16, 19:30
|Website||Click here to book via the Sadler's Wells website|