Successor, a dance-sound-installation-space project, was first conceived in 2008 when the artistic director of HORSE Dance Theater, Chen Wu-Kang and member Chou Shu-Yi, incidentally visited the terraces of HuaShan, the former wine factory built in 1916 and now preserved as multi-functional venue. Chen Wu-Kang recollects the moment: “I was in one corner of the building and Shu-Yi was on the other side, and he ran to me. At that moment you could see the conversation between the relatively slight body and the relatively huge space, which I find to be akin to what happens at every certain stage of life, as you contemplate on what you have, what is the next and what to begin with. It was how the idea for Successor began, hoping to enact a meeting between the historical space and our beings.”
The artistic collaboration for Successor has been the most progressive and interdisciplinary in HORSE’s history: four members of the group Volume-Collectif, including sound artists Yannick Dauby, Christophe Havard, Hughes Germain and visual artist, TSAI Wan-Shuen, were invited to join this project. An art-collective from the North-West of France, Volume-Collectif integrates the act of listening as the core of its projects: research and creations with sound, on-site and multi-media installations, diffusion and pedagogy. Besides Volume-Collectif, a total of 11 artists/performers from various backgrounds participated in Successor, including professional dancers, a tap dancer, theater actors and playwrights, from Taiwan, Italy and Israel. Given the creation concept, the performing space, and the amount of artists involved, Successor is indeed the biggest challenge HORSE has undertaken in terms of collaborative choreography of space.
After two-years’ development and one year of rehearsals, HORSE and Volume-Collectif together presented Successor, an exhibition and performance of sound and space at HuaShan, shaping the work in a series of three different forms during three weeks. The dance-sound-installation-space project took over a 1600 square-meters area, presenting an exhibition at daytime and a live performance in the evening, aiming to explore more possibilities for visual, acoustic, and surrounding live experiences for the performers, the audience, and the space itself.
Successor aims to break the divisions and contrapositions between performers/spectators, stage/auditorium, foci/sightlines, and subjective/objective through the cohesive unity of sound arts, visual installation design and dance movement. The audience is not here only to observe, but to be observed: indeed, the audience is the very essential element that completes the visual-spatial-auditory landscape.