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Dancing between cultures in Yokohama

by Florian Turgeon

Staff Writer

Contemporary dance has always pushed the boundaries of corporal expression by exploring themes that traditional dance genres and their movements have difficulty conveying. As one of the Month of France series of events organized by the Yokohama branch of the Institut Francais du Japon, CrossDance continues this exploration from a cross-cultural perspective with contemporary dance performances by both French and Japanese artists at the Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse on July 6.

Emmanuelle Huynh will perform her first original work “Mua,” which she created in 1995 after dancing with various French companies. Now the head of Angers National School of Contemporary Dance, she has been instrumental in maintaining ties between French and Japanese artists, including creating collaborative works such as “Futago” with Kosei Sakamoto in 2008, and “Spiel” with artist Akira Kasai in 2011.

In addition to Mua, the evening will feature “Phantom in Manufacture,” a new work by Japanese artist Miwa Okuno. A winner of two prizes at the Yokohama Dance Collection Ex 2013, Okuno is an up-and-coming contemporary dancer who has studied in France and is already becoming known for her innovative performances. “Phantom in Manufacture” is a blend of visual and sound design that draws on her experiences abroad.

The evening will end with a conference with Emmanuelle Huynh for those who would like to learn more about the origins of her work and learn about contemporary dance and its role in the cultural relationship between Japan and France.

DanceCross takes place at Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse from 4:40 p.m. on July 6. Tickets are ¥2,500 at the entrance or at ¥2,000 for students in advance. For more information, visit www.institutfrancais.jp/yokohama/events-manager/ (Japanese / French).