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18th Macao City Fringe Festival Truly ‘Extra.Ordinary’03 Jan 2019

Organised by the Cultural Affairs Bureau (IC), the 18th Macao City Fringe Festival, themed ‘Extra.Ordinary’, will be held from 11th to 27th January, featuring a total of 18 extraordinary programmes and 10 outreach activities, encouraging Festival-goers to break through the restrictions and framework of ‘normality’ to rediscover the exceptional in everyday life.

Cross-disciplinary creation - Make Art Different   

The Macao City Fringe Festival adopts the concept of ‘All around the city, our stages, our patrons, our artists’, encouraging the participation of the whole population.

The unprecedented underwater concert Wet Sounds by British artist Joel Cahen transforms an ordinary swimming pool into a space for music performance, while The Icebook by British artists Davy & Kristin McGuire is the world’s first projection mapped pop-up book. Local artist Lei Sam I turns an ordinary supermarket into the play A Short Time Escape, telling stories of life while shuffling between the aisles in a supermarket, and the show Be My Old Friend by the Dream Theatre Association tells personal stories of the elderly about their cherished objects, piecing together in the process the bygone days of Macao.

This year, the Fringe Festival also features cross-disciplinary and cross-regional shows and collaboration, including Body Skyline, jointly presented by Amálgama Dance Company from Portugal, Dancecology from Taiwan region and Stella & Artist from Macao, which presents a new perspective of Macao via the lines of the landscape with the extension of our bodies.

Tranquillity Transmission - a show jointly presented by American artist Morgan O’Hara, renowned for her Live Transmission drawing, and Artistry of Wind Box Community Development Association - explores the meanings of ‘disappearance’ and ‘incompletion’ in life, while dance performance Goldfish, presented by Four Dimension Spatial from Macao and Changde Modern Dance Company from Hunan, reveals the concealed memories of emotional taboos submerged in the logic of dreams.

The Fringe Festival also features other excellent programmes, including Interactive Urban Music Ensemble, which invites the audience to play music by touching an installation with drawings of different musical instruments. By contrast, Flash Mob - Phubber Drama encourages audiences to engage in an interactive activity filled with fun and reflection by catching ‘phubbers’ at bus stops...

Sigma showcases virtuoso geometries through the combination of circus and Indian classical dance, while Bæd Time reveals the suffering caused by bullying through a conversation between two girls at bedtime, and in the outdoor performance Sonia the audience will listen to a story which reflects the ‘reality’ of ‘non-human’ characters.

This edition of the Fringe Festival caters to audiences of different ages, with The Magic of Light and Shadow presented by French mime artist Edi Rudo and CANU Theatre; the concert Once Upon a Time Singing in Portuguese is performed by Casa de Portugal em Macau.

Outreach activities encourage mixed media art

In addition to several creative programmes, this year’s Fringe Festival features workshops, talks, art critique and sharing sessions, among other outreach activities. Interactive Installations Workshops, instructed by local art group Little Studio Ensemble, explores how technology works with art to activate responsive pieces on the canvas of the installations.

In this, each participant creates a simple interactive piece that will be assembled and curated into a bigger composition. Macao choreographer Tracy Wong, Hong Kong artist Mao Wei, dance group Hung Dance from Taiwan region and Spanish flamenco artist Sònia Sánchez will host three dance workshops called ‘On-Site - Body Playground’, in which they will teach techniques of floor flow, contemporary dance and flamenco. In addition, American artist Morgan O’Hara will hold her ‘Life Cycle Drawing Workshop’.

Family workshops, encouraging families to get close to the arts and to experience the beauty of art are very much part of the Festival mix. In ‘Edi’s Mime Workshop’, French mime and shadowgrapher Edi Rudo teaches participating families how to manipulate imaginary things. In the ‘Family Dance Workshop - I Love Balls’ by the Changde Modern Dance Company participants can join an outdoor interactive performance. In the ‘Ephemeral Windows Creative Workshop’, Italian street artist Barlo and curator Filipa Simões and participants jointly create a series of illustrations portraying people and their personal stories on rice paper.

Fringe Reviews will continue to bring audiences a different perspective through a number of exchange activities. In the workshop ‘Art Reviews 101’, experienced local and overseas instructors are invited to host five sessions of art review classes to enhance participants’ appreciation plus analytical and observation skills of art performances. This workshop is part of the Seed Project of the ‘Cultural Ambassadors Programme’ designed to cultivate cultural talent.

In addition, this edition of the Fringe Festival will continue to host the sharing session ‘Fringe Exchange: Connect with Festivals’ whereby organisers from the three regions are invited to share their Festival experiences and cultural environment, providing useful information for art groups and artists interested in holding overseas performances.

For more information, please visit: www.macaucityfringe.gov.mo.