Tuesday, 27 May 2008

"sutra" (sidi larbi cherkaoui + monks from shaolin temple) ***exceptional experience

tuesday 27th may 2008


sidi larbi cherkaoui ~ direction, choreography + performer
antony gormley ~ visual creation + design
szymon brzoska ~ music + piano
with monks from the shaolin temple:
shi yanbo, shi yanchuang, shi yanci, shi yandong, shi yanhao, shi yanjiao, shi yanjie, shi yanli, shi yanmo, shi yanna, shi yanpeng, shi yanqun, shi yanting, shi yanxing, shi yanyong, shi yanyuan, shi yanzhu

piano ~ szymon brzoska
violin ~ alies sluiter & olga wojciechowska
cello ~ laura anstee
percussion ~ coordt linke

produced by sadlers wells
with the blessing of the abbot of song shan shaolin temple master shi yongxin

Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui takes a completely different direction with this brand new Sadler’s Wells production Sutra, which is inspired by the skill, strength and spirituality of Buddhist Shaolin Monks. He has collaborated closely with Antony Gormley who creates a constructed environment for the performers, employing light to dramatic effect. Polish composer Szymon Brzóska has created a brand new score for piano, percussion and strings.

"As a child, Bruce Lee was a role model; not just the characters he portrayed, but the man himself and the world-view he embodied. When he spoke about martial arts, about drawing from nature, from elemental forces, it rang true. Through him, I delved deeper into Kung-Fu, to the Shaolin school of chan Buddhism. Later in life, as a choreographer and a dancer, I was inspired by the Shaolin understanding of movement, their complete identification with the living beings around them, and that remarkable ability to become the essence of a tiger, crane or snake" Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui
By visiting the Shaolin Temple in China, and working with the Shaolin Monks over several months, Larbi follows a life-long interest by exploring the philosophy and faith behind the Shaolin tradition, its relationship with Kung-Fu, and its position within a contemporary context.

pretty special. wonderful. humour. design being a live a integral part of the show. stunning acrobatics and disciplined movement. cuteness from the amazing little kid. strong empathetic and evocative music that again worked as a central element in the piece. enormous generosity from larbi standing apart to let the monks dominate. nively balanced in the final sequence where he steps in as one of the gang doing the same high octane king fu.

violent budhism at its finest and most beguiling i suspect. and so i keep a preference for the qi kung of cloud gate's more liquidly powerful "moon water".

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