City Walk is visual and physical journey of New York City. The dancers' body transform into various architectural forms and becomes alive as we move through the space of the city. With the magnificent view on the rooftop at WestBeth, the movement echoes with the spaciousness, the horizon line and the bird's eye view of the cityscape.
It is a site-specific dance performance co-created by Hsuan-Hsiu Hung and Mayu Shirai as a part of the 2016 WestFest Dance Festival.
Choreographer: Hsuan-Hsiu Hung & Mayu Shirai
Dancer: Hsuan-Hsiu Hung & Mayu Shirai
Music score: "Beginnings" by TwoDaysToAlaska
Photo credit: Mikk Tamme & Darial Sneed
Video credit: Dancing Camera
Researching ideas on-site/about-site
How to dance with the magnificent view?
1. Using the elements from the space
2. Dance "with" the space
3. The dancers are "a part" of the space and landscape
What are the elements that inspire us to move here?
1. Shadows and lights
2. Horizontal line of the skyline
3. The grids of the city, and grids of the tiles on the rooftop
4. Vastness of space: the sky and the river
5. The calm, relaxed and meditative quality of rooftop, makes it a place away from the busy life on the ground level.
Imageries in mind while being on site:
1. The moving statues on cathedral
2. Another way of seeing: Looking up/looking down. Rooftop as a mini version of the city.
3. Meditative state of dance, quiet and inward but also clear and strong.
4. A dialogue of dance between the 2 dancers.
5. Personal story of being/living/moving in the city
Rehearsing all over the city as part of the site-specific movement exploration:
1. Absorb energies and ideas from different sites. Use this as source of choreography.
2. Build connection and sensitivity between the 2 dancers.
3. Practice recording, photographing and editing.
4. Incorporate writings to document the creative process.
5. Create publicity materials.
6. Explore possible music for the final show.
Researching ideas throughout New York City
In the choreographic process, Mayu and I went to central park and improvised with the landscape there. We later incorporated the elements in the improvisation into the final work.