Dance Film Screenings

The Dance Film Series is a free screening series (with popcorn!) co-produced by MyDance Alliance and Five Arts Centre, to introduce international dance films to Malaysian audiences, and to encourage enhanced enjoyment, interest and discussion around the art of dance.

MyDance Alliance president Bilqis Hijjas will introduce the work of the featured artist before the screening, and Five Arts Centre member June Tan will lead a discussion of the film following the screening.

Venue: Five Arts Centre, 27 Lorong Datuk Sulaiman 7, 60000 Kuala Lumpur

Don’t forget: bring your own beanbag!

For more info, please contact Bilqis, or 017 310 3769. Please also contact Bilqis if you would like to organise special screenings of these works for audiences of 10 people or more.

Dance Film Series I – Image/ Re-imagine: Films using dance to generate interesting new imagery.

SESSION 1: PINA (103 minutes) — 8PM, Tuesday 22 May

The legendary dancer and choreographer Pina Bausch, who died in 2009, transformed the language of dance with her extraordinary and revolutionary body of work. This mesmerizing film by acclaimed director Wim Wenders (The Buena Vista Social Club) captures some of Bausch’s greatest choreographies, brilliantly performed by her Tanztheater Wuppertal ensemble.

A dazzling celebration of her life and work, Pina is a feast for the senses.

“Incredibly moving… An experience beyond live stage performance.” – The Times

[Film will be screened in 2D]

SESSION 2: Sacred Monsters (63 min) 8PM, Tuesday 29 May

This major work and worldwide box office hit, exclusively recorded at London’sSadler’s Wells Theatre, brings together two of today’s pre-eminent dance talents: Akram Khan, world renowned for developing his own ‘contemporary Kathak’style, and international superstar Sylvie Guillem, as they explore the dynamics and language of two great classical dance forms, kathak and ballet.

“’I have spent my life studying and performing kathak. It is the source of my creative process,” says Khan, “Working with Sylvie Guillem is an exciting newchallenge, giving me the opportunity to explore another classical dance language with one of its greatest exponents, and as a result unearth the things that are most often lost between the classical and modern world.”

“An exhilarating evening of humour, charm and extraordinary tenderness.” – The Sunday Telegraph

“A five-star display of speed, precision and power.” – The Guardian

SESSION 3: Sinfonietta : Symphony in D : Stamping Ground (90 min) 8PM, Wednesday 6 June

Dedicated to bridging the gap between modern dance and classical ballet, the Nederlands Dans Theater has forged a reputation as one of the most innovativeand exciting dance groups in Europe. Under Jiří Kylián’s visionary direction (from 1975 to 1999), the company is a world-renowned ensemble famous for their immaculate precision and powerful elegance.

These three works display Kylián’s unique and very personal style, his affection for group performances and his remarkable ability to create highly inventive and witty ballets.

“When people say they don’t ‘get’ contemporary dance perhaps they should try NDT.” – The Independent, UK

SESSION 4: Bamboo Dream (88 min) 8PM, Monday 11 June

The subject of many stories and legends, bamboo symbolizes integrity and simple elegance. In this full-length work by Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan ,iconic choreographer Lin Hwai-min interprets the elegant music of composer Arvo Pärt as well as improvisations on the Chinese flute by Huang Sheng-Kai.

Bamboo Dream displays the seamless blend of classical, modern and Chinese movement forms characteristic of Cloud Gate’s style. Seven sequences of astonishing physical skill and beauty mark the changes of weather and passage of time, against a breathtaking stage set of evergreen bamboo.

Dance Film Series II – ‘Dance-y’ Documentaries

Documenting the creation of dance in interesting ways

SESSION 1: Dancing Dreams — 2 Sept (92 min)

In 2008, world-famous dancer and choreographer Pina Bausch selected 40 teenagers who had never heard of her to be part of the dance performance Kontakhof (‘A Place to Make Contact’). They spent the next ten months falling in love with dance and discovering the work of Pina Bausch, documented in this film by Anne Linsel and Rainer Hoffmann.

Pina Bausch died in 2009. Dancing Dreams is a testimony to her revolutionary work and the impact she has had on the contemporary dance movement.

“Uplifting and life-affirming! A moving and most fitting memorial piece for PinaBausch” – Cinema Without Borders

SESSION 2: Rize — 9 Sept (86 min)

This riveting documentary explores the physically astounding Los Angelesworlds of clowning and krumping – spectacular styles of hip-hop dance. Directed by photographer and music video director David LaChappelle, Rize follows the fortunes of dancers like Tommy the Clown, a former drug runner turned children’s-party clown, as well as the phenomenon of krumping, which resembles a cross between an epileptic seizure and ecstatic possession; what one practitioner calls ‘ghetto ballet’.

A movie full of passion, urgency and breathtaking images, Rize is an intimate portrayal of inner city youth surrounded by drug addiction and impoverishment who evolve a completely unique style of dance, and manage to rise above.

“Visually stunning.” – Washington Post

“A feel-good film that actually makes you feel good.” – Boston Globe

SESSION 3: Forgotten Memories — 16 Sept (52 min)

Jiří Kylián, renowned Czech choreographer and artistic director of Nederlands Dans Theater, has created more than one hundred works, many now part of the repertories of the greatest dance companies of the world. This 2011 film gives an exceptional insight into the life of a creative legend who has shunned the limelight.

Shot in Den Haag, Prague and Paris, Forgotten Memories is an intimate profile ofthe dancer’s life and career, his lucky escape from the Soviet crackdown on the Prague Spring, his creative process and even the love of his life, muse and now wife Sabine Kupferberg.

“Dancers and choreographers are very fragile, very breakable and we are an endangered species,” says Kylián, “Because we have decided that we will declare our body as a work of art. And it takes a lot of courage to actually open up and show yourself naked, with all the faults, with all the mistakes, with all the deficiencies that we have.”

SESSION 4: La Danse – The Paris Opera Ballet — 23 Sept (180 min)

Frederick Wiseman, one of America’s most respected documentary filmmakers, presents a glimpse into the inner workings of the world’s oldest ballet company. Wiseman and his camera crew watched from the sidelines as the Paris OperaBallet (among them ballet stars Emilie Cosette, Aurélie Dupont, and Laëtitia Pujol) worked out the details for the company’s 2008 program. In addition to dancers honing their craft, Wiseman trains his eye on the people backstage who help make the ballet a reality, from the artistic directors and financiers who raise the funds to the stage crew who build the sets and the cleaning crew who sweep up after the show.

“Frederick Wiseman’s astoundingly beautiful documentary has sumptuous delights to satisfy every balletomane.” – San Francisco Chronicle

“A unique kind of magic: a documentary about the work in art that is itself awork of art.” – Boston Globe