赵梁舞蹈剧场 | 「东方灵欲三部曲」
Profound beautiful, dreamlike -- for the first time, well-known modern artist, Mr. ZhaoLiang, manifests the profound essence of traditional Chinese culture in his Soul & Desire Trilogy (Dreams of Zen / The Tea Spell / Escaping From the Mountain). He adopts the technique of “drama within drama”, uses antiques as stage props, creates surreal visual effects and integrates symbolism in the dances. The performances are spiritual creative, philosophical, visual and experimental while the plots are beautiful stories themselves.
traditional Chinese culture and his fluency in eastern dance vocabulary after he spent time overseas. The three chapters are independent yet interrelated. Together they form an experiment in terms of theme, structure, dance components and visual effects, which demands extraordinary artistic talent and courage. All these may as well make Zhao Liang an avant-garde in the modern dance history of China. In fact, these art works have also won round applauses overseas. They transcend the boundary between modern and classic, connect the East with the West and shine forth with something universal -- the human nature.
Up to the mountain; down from the mountain
《双下山》 / Escaping From the Temple
Escaping From the Temple was derived from two famous Chinese Kunqu Operas: Longing For the Mundane and Going Down the Mountain. As far as difficulty level is concerned, Longing For the Mundane is well known as the demanding one to perform for female artists. In his book My Country and My People, famous author Mr. Lin Yu tang once marveled at the monolog script of the young nun in Longing For the Mundane that, “this is undoubtedly a top notch literature in China.”
Zhao Liang inventively presents the Kunqu Opera singing and dance performances simultaneously on the stage, featuring both the natural beauty of the former and the avant-garde dynamics of the latter. Such approach to incorporate “drama within drama” is very challenging. The role of the young nun is played out by two people, among whom Ms. Dong Fei has been trained under the lineage of the great Peking Opera master Mr. MeiLanfang. She will play the role of Empty and sing Kunqu alive on the stage.
The story of Escaping From the Temple is quite well known in China: on a beautiful spring day, a young nun met a young monk and they fell in love with each other. Eventually both of them left their temples and went down the mountain together. The ending is the climax of the story. However, is it an illusion of the young nun or a projection of the audiences for a “happy ending”? The amazing part of Escaping From the Temple lies in its open ending. The audiences may uncover one layer of the story after another...
From the point of view of visual effects, Escaping From the Temple may be the least fancy show among all three in Trilogy: everything is presented as itis. However discussions and debates triggered by the show and its “as-is” style have never stopped. To be or not to be -- in the mountain or down from the mountain, in the temple or in the mundane -- and how to transit smoothly in between... Audiences of this show may find themselves pondering these questions. This art work was also featured as special performance on the Shanghai International Art Festival in 2015.Insummer 2016, this show was on a tour in Germany, which won enormous positive feedbacks and pressed a ‘reset’ button to German audiences’ impression on Chinese modern dance.
尾声 / Epilog
Ashes to ashes; dust to dust...
In each show of the Trilogy, Buddhistic music is played at the end of the performance, creating a compassionate and harmonious atmosphere. These art works mirror the fact the all forms -- myself, others and myself again --are merely layers of armor that we put on in the mundane world, from one lifetime to another. When the body is free from its constraints, it starts to become relaxed and flexible and emotions may arise. Better let go of the attachment to this body as well!
天地清明，山高水长都是肉身，浩瀚星空，霞光云霁，无一不是归处。 The sky is pure and the earth is clear, while human form could be manifested everywhere in the landscape. The stars are shimmering and the clouds are floating, while my home could be set anywhere in this universe.
于万籁俱静中，才能听到一朵花开的声音。 In the absolute silence, one can hear the sound of a flower blossoming.
Know all sentient beings. Know the world. Eventually ... know thyself.
期盼与您和光同尘！Look forward to seeing you there!
A fantastic attempt of oriental aesthetics in western interpretation, an absolute tribute to the Chinese Dance History!
Zhao Liang—Contemporary Artist
Zhao Liang, a spiritual dancer and choreography wizard, has a unique flare of Eastern mystery. He was the first Chinese winner of “Roman Award” for modern dance at the international dance competition. Also presented to him were National Cultural Award as well as Lotus Cup, the highest award in the Chinese dance community, for Best Performance and Best Choreography. On his tour to Germany, Zhao Liang was referred by the local media as “Shepard” from the East.
The words “dancer” and “dance” alone are not sufficient to define Zhao Liang and his works. Besides the unique somatic language of dance, his creativity and use of space, behavioral art and music make Zhao Liang a truly well-rounded artist.
In 2012, the artist founded Zhao Liang Art Studio. Their art works flow from the heart and use dance as a vehicle. The team has been following their unique artistic philosophy and style of body language. Through continuous experiments and explorations of organic movements, they have created a number of performances that not only resonate on one’s soul level but are also popular with the audiences.
Among all the art works, the Soul & Desire Trilogy kept setting new box office records for modern dance shows produced in China. Zhao Liang Art team have started to tour overseas more often and are received with warm welcome by fans abroad.