HA NOI - One of Viet Nam's most innovative young choreographers will soon be taking his unique blend of Vietnamese and international influences to the Asian Modern Ballet Festival in Hong Kong.
Le Vu Long is the only Vietnamese artist to be invited to the annual event, where the 27-year-old will perform and teach dances based on his recent 20-minute work Steps.
Long, who is the choreographer for the Ha Noi-based Viet Nam Opera and Ballet Theatre, will perform Steps at workshops in Chiang Mai, Thailand and Luang Phrabang, Laos later this month. The performances are part of the Dance Theatre Workshop's Mekong Project, which is funded by the Rockefeller Foundation.
The Laos workshop will also be attended by Vietnamese painter Ly Hoang Ly.
The international exposure follows a particularly productive phase for Long last year. In late 2002, he was able to realise his vision of a performance featuring ten deaf amateur dancers - Togetherhigher, which played at the Ha Noi Opera House. Togetherhigher, which was supported by the British Council and Viet Nam Opera and Ballet Theatre, was inspired by Long's trip to a British contemporary dance festival featuring disabled performers in the Croatian capital of Zagreb.
Earlier, Long collaborated with three other choreographers to produce Listen to the Silent Night, blending French ideas with the existing conventions of modern Vietnamese dance. The quartet presented their work after completing training stints with two prestigious Parisian modern dance troupes - Colin and Atlantic.
The Dance Theatre Workshop's Mekong Project next workshop is scheduled to take place in Viet Nam later this year. - VNS
Reprinted with permission from VNS