Choy Ka Fai
Engineering the ghost of Butoh at the intersection of technology and spirituality
Employing a multidisciplinary practice that encompasses media art, theater, and performance, Choy Ka Fai demonstrated with his previous two appearances at Kyoto Experiment his unique approaches as well as painstaking research about and deep respect for dance. Notion: Dance Fiction deliberately “misused” technology in order to revive the choreography of legendary figures from dance history. Soft Machine, on the other hand, researched contemporary dancers based in Asia in order to build up a large inventory and archive.
In his practice, Choy Ka Fai has long shuttled back across the vertical time axis of the history left behind by individual dancers as well as over the horizontal axis that is the resolutely varied expanse of Asia. Now for UnBearable Darkness, he has asked none other than the founder of Butoh, Tatsumi Hijikata (1928–1986), to perform.
He has adopted several means for talking to Hijikata. He went to an itako, or blind medium, on Mt. Osore in northern Japan, and invoked the spirit of the late artist. Choy Ka Fai also generated an avatar of Hijikata from the materials he left behind.
Can we who are alive now dance together with the formless spirits of the dead using the media of past and present?
- North Hall, ROHM Theatre Kyoto
- Performed in Japanese with English （and Japanese） surtitles
- SINGAPORE / BERLIN, GERMANY
Choy Ka Fai
Choy Ka Fai (b. 1979) is a Berlin-based Singaporean artist. His multidisciplinary art practice situates itself at the intersection of dance, media art and performance. At the heart of his research is a continuous exploration of the metaphysics of the human body. Through research expeditions, pseudo-scientific experiments and documentary performances, Ka Fai appropriates technologies and narratives to imagine new futures of the human body. Ka Fai’s projects have been presented in major institutions and festivals worldwide, including Sadler’s Wells (London, UK), ImPulsTanz Festival (Vienna, Austria) and Tanz Im August (Berlin, Germany). He was the resident artist at tanzhaus nrw in Düsseldorf (2017-2019) and Künstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin (2014-15). In 2010, he was awarded the Young Artist Award by the National Arts Council, Singapore. Ka Fai graduated with a M.A. in Design Interaction from the Royal College of Art, London.
|Concept, Documentary and Direction||Choy Ka Fai|
|Choreographic Presence and Paranormal Performance||Tatsumi Hijikata|
|Dramaturgy||Tang Fu Kuen|
|Dance Engineering, Motion Capture and Performance||Neji Pijin|
|Shaman Understudy, Performance and Costume Design||Rie Usui|
|Research, Vocal and Translation||Tomoko Inoue|
|Visual Design and Technology||Brandon Tay|
|Lighting Design||Ray Tseng|
|Production and Technical Management||ARTFACTORY (Andy Lim, Steve Kwek and Yap Seok Hui)|
|Company Manager||Mara Nedelcu|
|In co-operation with||TPAM – Performing Arts Meeting in Yokohama 2018|
|In research co-operation with||The Saison Foundation, The Japan Foundation Asia Center and Hijikata Tatsumi Archive at Keio University Art Center|
|Co-produced by||tanzhaus nrw and Kyoto Experiment|
|Supported by||Kunststiftung NRW Germany, the NATIONALES PERFORMANCE NETZ Coproduction|
|Fund for Dance||(funded by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media)|
|The presentation at Kyoto Experiment is supported by||The Agency for Cultural Affairs Government of Japan through the Japan Arts Council and National Arts Council, Singapore|
|Presented by||Kyoto Experiment|