24th Macao Arts Festival to feature a variety of dance programmes

The 24th Macao Arts Festival (MAF) returns to the city's stages next month, with an array of extraordinary performances scheduled for May 3 through June 3. The Festival's programme encompasses theatrical works, Chinese traditional opera, music, visual arts exhibitions and dance performances. As always, local productions feature prominently in the Festival, whose goals include promoting development within the territory's own arts scene, and Macao's talent and creativity in the dance genre are well represented this year. My Chair 20:13, by Contemporary Stage, presents the story of a modern young woman fighting her way to "victory" and calls for introspection into the values of contemporary society. Presented to the public at the Old Court Building on May 4 and 5 (Saturday and Sunday), there are two shows daily, at 3pm and 8pm. That same weekend the Sir Robert Ho Tung Library hosts Here She Dances (May 4-5, 8pm), a mixed media work based on the poetry of Jenny Ng, uniting multimedia arts with literary excerpts and music. Produced by the local, non-profit cultural association Comuna de Pedra, Here She Dances is an excellent example of the capabilities and creativity of local talent. The following Wednesday brings the opportunity to witness the fruits of an innovative programme of cultural and artistic exchange among the Pearl River Delta regions. Love Letters is a modern ballet, depicting a precarious relationship that spans several decades, based on the correspondence contained in five letters. Woven through with romantic classical music, this deeply inspiring dance work takes to the stage at the Macao Cultural Centre Grand Auditorium on May 8, at 8pm. Local groups stand side by side on the Festival programme with noteworthy international dance companies. Xavier Le Roy (France) inhabits the Old Court Building from May 16 through 19 (Thursday to Sunday), presenting his work Self Unfinished each evening at 8pm. Known for his scientific approach to dance, Xavier Le Roy offers audiences a solo choreography filled with surprising movements that distort his form as far as possible from a recognisable human figure. Inspired by famous works of Israeli female poets, Reflections tells the story of a turbulent love triangle with a combination of movement, lighting effects, music, video and puppetry. Produced by Fresco Dance Company (Israel), Reflections ascends the Stage of the Macao Cultural Centre Small Auditorium on May 31 and June 1 (Friday and Saturday) at 8pm. Wayne McGregor | Random Dance brings the Festival to a close with FAR, an extraordinary, anatomy-defying choreographic work performed by ten incredible dancers and accompanied by a superb score and jaw-dropping visuals. FAR can be seen on June 1 and 2 (Saturday and Sunday), at 8pm, at the Macao Cultural Centre Grand Auditorium. Tickets for the 24th Macao Arts Festival are still available, in limited numbers, at all Kong Seng Ticketing Network outlets. Telephone bookings may be made on 2855 5555. For more information please check the MAF website at: www.icm.gov.mo/fam.

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