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See, With Mind's Eye - Contemporary Dance Appreciation Workshop

Venue Date & Time Price
Exhibition Gallery, Tsuen Wan Town Hall

See, With Mind's Eye - Contemporary Dance Appreciation Workshop is an inquiry into the nature of dance through interactive activities, video viewing and discussion. Dance appreciation is basically about two main aspects. One, personal aesthetics - What is your sensibility or taste? What are your preferences? But personal taste changes with experiences and education.  Second, communal aesthetics, i.e., the artistic standards that evolved over time – What is aesthetically sound? Does a certain object have artistic value? How is the work valued according to certain artistic principles of design? Eventually, a personal meaning can be found through the process of dance appreciation.


By understanding how a dance is put together, we can decode a dance piece. In each are a few basic but essential elements – music, spatial relationships, movement qualities, etc.  These are the basic tools which we need to appreciate and to understand a dance.  This appreciation workshop for contemporary dance is an introduction to these elements.  In the 8 sessions, we will actively look into the creative process and venture into the mind of a choreographer.  

 (Conducted in Cantonese and supplemented with English)

2 September Rhythm & Movement  
Dance is often accompanied with music, and often works closely with music/rhythm.  Sometimes dance works are created to reflect not just the rhythmic pattern but the music qualities as well. Regardless of styles, all dances follow their specific rhythmic patterns one way or the other.  In this session, the relationship between dance and music will be investigated.


9 September Spatial Relationship 
The spatial element is another important feature in dance.  A spatial pattern can create a visually beautiful effect, like a 3-dimensional painting.  Yet spatial arrangement among dancers projects specific relationships or sometimes tension in a dance work.


16 September Movement Qualities  
"What makes people move?" This is Pina Bausch's famous saying.  Movement qualities not only are about different dynamics, which make the movements or a dance visually interesting, but also reflect the choreographic intent - how we move depends on the intent behind it.


23 September Dance as a Mixed Media Art Form  
While dance can stand on its own as an art form, we often find that there are other elements involved in a dance performance.  Sometimes a choreographer will incorporate props, lighting, costume, dance projection and computer generated images to add layers to a dance piece.


30 September Aesthetic Qualities  
Embedded in dance is the nature of beauty – something that appeals to our senses.  One of the most essential elements of a dance is the visual element - the lines of the body that inspire “beauty”.  Yet, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, so what is beauty? How do we understand a choreographer’s idea of beauty? What is our experience towards beauty? 


7 October Dance as a Form of Communication  
Choreographers often have a story to tell, and dancers use their skills to interpret such a story in a very deliberate manner.  The story may stimulate thoughts and emotions, or share symbolic meanings.  By using the tools from the previous discussions, we will try to understand and translate the choreographer's messages.


14 & 19 October Discussion on Rite of Spring and Guided Tour of Rite of Spring Exhibition  
Participants are highly recommended to join both sessions.  From the last century, choreographers all over the world have been inspired by Stravinsky’s powerful music to create equally powerful dances.  As we celebrate the centenary of Rite of Spring, we will take this opportunity to take a closer look at the different interpretations using the tools we have learnt and conclude the workshop with a visit to the Rite of Spring Exhibition.


Speaker & Instructor

Cheung Sau Mui Vanessa is a lecturer in Academic Studies in Dance at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, teaching somatics and body‚Äźconditioning, as well as dance education modules on the BFA (Hons) degree programme. She is also responsible for developing outreach projects, and mentoring MFA (Dance) students. As an educator and independent artist, Cheung has also worked in different teaching settings, including the Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong Ballet’s Education and Outreach Unit, City Contemporary Dance Company, the Hong Kong Down Syndrome Association Dance Group, Phillip Wain (HK), Body Lab Pilates Studio (Taiwan), etc.


Cheung has been actively involved in dance as an independent artist. She was a co-founder of Choreo3 in the United States in 1998. Since returning to Hong Kong in 1999, she has worked with such companies as Danseomanie, Dance HK/NY and DanceArt, along with numerous independent artists. She was the Festival Coordinator for the Hong Kong Dance Festival 2006;  the member of the Steering Committee for the Hong Kong International Dance Symposium 2010;  Production Team of New Force in Motion Series: Dance Theatre 27 by Ivanhoe Lam, a dance series presented by the LCSD; and Project Coordinator of Current of Air by Koala Yip, a project funded by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council. 


Cheung is the holder of several degrees in Arts and Humanities, including a Master’s degree in Buddhist Studies from the University of Hong Kong, a Master’s degree in Translating and Interpreting from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, a Master’s degree in Dance from the Texas Woman’s University, and a Bachelor’s degree in Dance from the Ohio State University.



Tickets will be available from 2 August onwards at all URBTIX outlets, on Internet and by Credit Card Telephone Booking.
Half-price tickets are available for senior citizens aged 60 and above, people with disabilities and the minder, full-time students and recipients of the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA). (Limited tickets for full-time students and CSSA recipients available on a first-come, first-served basis.)

Group Booking Discount
10% off for purchase of 4 lectures at regular price 

Concessionary ticket holders must produce evidence of their identity or age upon admission

Patrons could enjoy only one of the above discount schemes for each ticket, please inform the box office staff at the time of purchase

Patrons aged 6 and above are welcome

Participants are strongly advised to arrive punctually


Programme Enquiries: 2268 7323

Ticketing Enquiries: 2734 9009

Credit Card Telephone Booking: 2111 5999

Internet Booking: www.urbtix.hk


The workshop lasts for about two hours

The contents of this programme do not represent the views of the Leisure and Cultural Services Department

The presenter reserves the right to substitute artists and change the programme should unavoidable circumstances make it necessary


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