2023. jún 16.

Theatre as Sanctuary

írta: Ittvagyoka
Theatre as Sanctuary

Mutdance, a South-Korean company featuring only female dancers, turned the Győr National Theatre into a real sanctuary. Their show, Bemut, presented as a part of the 10th Theatrical Olympics, was composed of three different, though coherent choreographies.


The first piece, 101%, created by the current Artistic Director Jung-A Kim, suggested the unison of the elements to me. The earth as the starting point of dance, the water as the movements flowing into each other, the air as the whoosh and flitting arms, while the fire was represented as the sun, the burning brightness we all desire.

The unique movements are led by the breath and soul. The dancers are grounded, always in touch with the floor, still incredibly ethereal. They seem to work along with, rather than against, gravity, whilst reaching for the skies. The words of the Hungarian poet, Sándor Weöres come to my mind (in my own translation) “Beneath you is the earth, above you is the sky, within you is the ladder."


And just on cue, on stage, a ladder is descending indeed, luring those who desire to soar high.

Revealing Breath II is a true Buddhist mediation both in scenery and music with mantras. In the piece of the company founder Young-hee Kim, the dancers, dressed in white, very slowly, sometimes hardly noticeably move. Some of them seated, others stood up are concentrating on their breaths.


Every single dancer is completely present in this pure state of being, and time stops for me too, I am lost in the here and now, my mind cannot wander even for a moment. It is amazing how much can happen in stillness!

After the interval, we became a part of a wonderful ceremony. Immortal Life Through Passage of Time, also created by Young-hee Kim, opens with traditional Buddhist bells, followed by women wearing masks. They could be death masks and in a way they are, as we emotionally, symbolically die only to be reborn several times in life. Whenever a cycle is complete, we cannot move forward without changing, without leaving our current mask behind. This eternal flowing circle was expressed powerfully by the movements, sometimes calmly, other times with fierce energy, as the transition from the old to the new is not always smooth.


However, the eternal cycles of life always push or inspire us (depends on how we approach it) to grow, to let go and to welcome the new. Watching the show, I truly feel how moment by moment I put down my old, not needed mask, how my insecurity is replaced by the sensation of freedom. By the end of the piece I was almost moving forward with the dancers, towards the lights, towards something new.

Photos by Zoltán Jekli & Zoltán Katona

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