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Ahn Eun-me’s ‘Dragons’ to take flight

Choreographer Ahn presents new project, involving Asian Gen Z dancers

Poster image for “Dragons” (Ahn Eun-Me Company)
Poster image for “Dragons” (Ahn Eun-Me Company)

Choreographer Ahn Eun-me has set out to uplift people’s spirits amid the COVID-19 pandemic with her latest project “Dragons,” which features a group of young dancers from across Asia.

“Dragons” will go on stage at Yeongdeungpo Art Hall in western Seoul on Saturday and Sunday.

For the piece, Ahn sought out Generation Z dancers, those born between 1996 to 2010. Having grown up in a world dominated by mobile technology, Ahn believes the Gen Z dancers are “dragons that can take us to an unseen future.”

The project features five dancers from Taiwan, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia and Korea, who were born after 2000, along with eight dancers from her dance company, Ahn Eun-Me Company.

“Dragons,” which was scheduled to be staged last September in Korea, had been postponed to March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As the virus crisis continues to limit international traveling, the five dancers recorded their parts in 3D videos.

Jang Young-kyu, the bassist of alternative pop band Leenalchi, participated in the project as the music director.

“Performances around the world are presented online, narrowing culture differences. Yet it is still important to appreciate those differences,” Ahn said. “Unable to physically connect with each other in Seoul, we made our own language little by little, every day online. It was a difficult process and a regrettable one.”

“Though globalism is about transcending time and place, we look into each other through the flat screen, trying to interpret the meaning of movements. It was a long, difficult journey that cannot be explained in words,” she said.

Ahn is a celebrated choreographer who has taken her innovative projects around the world, including the US, France, UK and Hong Kong, among others. Her eponymous dance company had its debut performance in 1988 and has been performing globally ever since.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which has nearly shut down the global performing arts scene, Ahn continued to put on new shows. In February, she held an educational dance game “Until Die Thanks Dance.” Earlier in August, she hosted an online performance with 40 participants around the world through Zoom.

Tickets for “Dragons” are sold out.

By Im Eun-byel (