Wen Wei Dance
Wen Wei Wang
OCT. 31, NOV. 188.8.131.52, 2006
Agora de la danse
A presentation of Agora de la danse
in collaboration with Danse Danse
“It is the considered opinion
of many Canadian dance mavens that Vancouver’s Wen Wei Wang
is one of the most gifted choreographers of the next generation.
Born in China, he is a magnificent dancer who cunningly fuses the
ballet vocabulary of his training with contemporary dance idioms.” (The Globe and Mail, Canada)
Danse Danse, in collaboration with Agora de la
danse, is pleased to present Vancouver’s Wen Wei Dance in its Montreal debut. The newly formed, fast-rising company
brings us a piece for six dancers by Wen Wei Wang.
Commissioned by CanDance, a network of Canadian presenters involved
in creating and presenting dance shows, the work will have its world
premiere performance at the Dance Canada Festival in June 2006,
followed by a major national tour.
Wen Wei Wang and Wen Wei Dance
Born in 1965, Wen Wei Wang studied dance in his native China and
began his career performing with the Langzhou Regional Dance Company.
During a 1986 cultural exchange with Canada, Wen Wei Wang taught
dance in Vancouver and performed with the Lorita Leung Chinese Dance
Company. Back in China the following year, he was awarded a choreography
prize in Gansu province. In 1991, he moved to Canada, making his
home and pursuing his career in Vancouver. He danced with the Judith
Marcuse Dance Company before joining Ballet British Columbia from
1993 to 1995. A year-long stint with Les Grands Ballets Canadiens
de Montréal was followed by a return to Ballet British Columbia,
where he stayed until 2000.
While working as a dancer, Wen Wei Wang was also
taking every opportunity to build his skills as a choreographer.
His Asian-influenced work caused a sensation and was presented by
Arts Umbrella, Dance Dreams, the Judith Marcuse Dance Company’s
choreographic workshop and Ballet British Columbia’s Mentor
Program. In 2000, he was the recipient of the Clifford E. Lee Award
to create Snow at the Banff Centre for the Arts. The piece
for 14 dancers wowed audiences.
“Most of the audience
sat frozen, stunned by the beauty of the ethereal, elegant, exquisite
movements throughout the piece, as more dancers cohesively enriched
the dreamlike aura.” (Dance
He went on to be a guest choreographer with the
Ballet Jörgen Canada, Ballet British Columbia and the Alberta
Ballet. In March 2003, Wen Wei Wang danced a solo choreography at
the Vancouver International Dance Festival accompanied by the Vancouver
Symphony Orchestra. The following June, he set up his own dance
company. Soon afterward came Tao, “a carefully crafted,
beautifully performed, seventy-minute work” for six dancers.
“The complexity of Wang’s vocabulary is a joy to watch:
he moves bodies in space with what has become a sophisticated fusion
of cultural styles” (The Dance Current, Canada). Tao was restaged in 2004 at Vancouver’s Dancing on
the Edge Festival, then in three South American cities as part of
a contemporary dance festival.
In 2005, Wen Wei Dance presented One Man’s... A solo created and danced by Wen Wei Wang himself, the work will
be performed at the Vancouver International Dance Festival and the
Dancing on the Edge Festival.
'His full-length One
Man’s… was certainly one of the most polished and
sophisticated shows at the Edge, replete with a stunning film component
[...]. His reflective, methodical, intricate choreography is certainly
compelling.” (The Globe and
Wen Wei Wang also choreographs for dancers outside
his company. In the last three years, his duet with Peter Bingham
of the company EDAM, a group piece for the Ballet Jörgen and
a solo for Lisa Hostman stand out. His work so far heralds a promising
future – keep your eyes out.
Photos Chris Randle