Le French May Arts Festival & Unlock Dancing Plaza presents Emmanuelle Vo-Dinh’s new piece Simon says. Inspired by her fruitful exchange with four Hong Kong-based dancers in 2015, Vo-Dinh wanted to continue working with them to develop a piece of original choreography.
The premise was simple, let’s combine two childhood games: Simon says and the electronic parlour game Simon with its four coloured buttons where players have to recreate sequences associating sounds and colours. What they both have in common is the risk-taking, self-control, concentration, adrenaline rush… as well as the fact that both happen in a space of obedience and alienation.
With this basic idea of two games with four players, dancers from Hong Kong – who Emmanuelle Vo-Dinh met during a workshop there – travelled to Le Havre to continue working with her. Improvising, making and breaking rules as they went along, reflecting on the results, then letting go – a new challenge for the four more used to learning and assimilating choreographed steps – Simon says grew out of the artistic interface between these two approaches, blending efficiency, mastery, a love of games, and ever-reformulating situations. Between submission and rebellion, let the game begin!
Emmanuelle Vo-Dinh choreographer concept & set designer
James Yau, Joseph Lee, Tracy Wong, Carman Li dancers
David Monceau, Emmanuelle Vo-Dinh music
The performance will last for approximately 1 hour with no interval.
Simon says premièred at Festival Pharenheit at Le Phare (France) on 25 and 26 January 2017, before coming to Hong Kong.
Open to every ticket-holder of the performance.
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choreographer & Director of Le Phare, Centre chorégraphique national du Havre Normandie
Trained not just in classical dance but also at New York’s Merce Cunningham School, on returning to France Emmanuelle Vo-Dinh danced for François Raffinot between 1991 and 1996, before founding Sui Generis. Alongside her performing, in 2012 she took over as artistic director of Le Phare Centre chorégraphique national du Havre – Haute-Normandie, and continues to pursue collaborations across the world, including Hong Kong for Simon says.