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Cloud Gate to kick off North American tour on Friday

2018/02/14 19:09:49

CNA file photo

Taipei, Feb. 14 (CNA) Taiwan's Cloud Gate Dance Theatre kicks off its North American tour on Friday that will take it to Mexico City and six cities in the United States, the Ministry of Culture announced Wednesday.

The dance troupe will perform its 2013 production "Rice" at the Palace of Fine Arts in Mexico City on Feb. 16 and 17, according to the ministry.

"Rice" is inspired by the energy of Taitung County's Chihshang Township -- known as the hometown of rice -- and incorporates Hakka folk songs and video images of the life cycle of rice.

It was jointly produced and funded by theaters and art centers in Taiwan, Britain, Germany, Hong Kong and Singapore.

From Feb. 25 to March 24, the troupe will tour six cities in the United States, where it will perform its latest piece "Formosa," the ministry said.

Sixteenth-century Portuguese sailors are said to have exclaimed "Formosa!" (meaning "beautiful") when they first saw Taiwan.

The dance production "Formosa" is inspired by that event and is about the beauty of the island and its people, according to the troupe. It incorporates music by indigenous Taiwanese singer Sangpuy Katatepan and projects images of Chinese character typefaces.

Performances will take place at the University of Iowa's Hancher Auditorium on Feb. 25; at Chicago's Harris Theater for Music and Dance from March 2-3; and at Memorial Hall, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, on March 6.

Further shows will be held at the George Mason University Center for the Arts in Virginia on March 9; at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California from March 16-18; and at the Meany Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Washington in Seattle from March 22-24.

Founded by choreographer Lin Hwai-min (林懷民) in 1973, Cloud Gate Dance Theatre was Taiwan's first professional dance company.

Lin is known for fusing Eastern and Western aesthetics in his work and for integrating different art forms, such as Buddhist meditation, martial arts, aboriginal dance, ballet and traditional Chinese opera.

Cloud Gate has been called "Asia's leading contemporary dance theatre" by the Times. Its production of "Moon Water" was selected by the New York Times as the best dance of 2003.

(By Christie Chen)