Programme ➔ Main Programme ➔ Thomas Street Programme (2003-)
Project ➔ Live Arts programme, (2005-2007)
2007 Nov 20 (is beginning date)
2007 Nov 21 (has end date)
The second Vital Festival organised by the Chinese Art Centre looked at the relationship between the artist and audience with performances by artists of east Asian heritage from around the world. The performances were stripped down to their bare essentials, removing stage, technology, and theatre, to examine the body in space and time or the 'essence of performance'. Within this remit, the artists worked with only the basic props, creating works which were 'deceptively simple and poignant to expose what is at stake in the live'. The artist Yang Zhichao was originally due to perform at the festival, but was unable to attend.
The performances took place in the Centre and around the surrounding area. Each day was followed by a dinner with the artist which was open to visitors at the festival. Each day featured almost continual performances and a round table discussion with the artists involved.
During the two day festival artists Marcus Young, Brendan Fan and Po Shui were creating work, interventions and responses to the other performances. Artist Po Shui acted as a 'ringmaster' for the festival, ushering the audience members between each performance in a work which aimed to "manipulate the audience until they fully engaged with his character and become willing accomplices". The performance by Brendan Fan was 'un-witnessed' or 'potentially not carried out in the first place' featuring gallery text from their First Step exhibition and postcards handed out during the festival. Marcus Young also delivered a 'daily whisper' to unsuspecting members of the audience to express their way of staying close as possible to the "essence or performative life force of acts of speech".
The first day featured performances from Rosa Mei, Lee Wen, Yingmei Duan, Jason Lim, He Chengyao, Leung Po-shan, and Hao Lang.
The second day featured performances by Becky Ip, Zhou Bin, Yadong Hao, Jenevieve Chang, and Lushan Lui, as well as a repeat of the performance by He Chenyao.