Cyprus Mail

Merging Basque rhythms with contemporary dance

By Emmelia Georgiou

The 20th Contemporary Dance Festival is coming to its end with only two dance performances left. The two remaining countries, set to perform on Wednesday and Thursday, are Japan and Spain and both also fall under the European Capital of Culture Pafos2017 umbrella. Both dance companies have some out of the ordinary choreographies which merge the art of movement with music and voice – an overflow of art.

The Kukai dance group representing Spain, and the musical band Oreka TX from the Basque country present the performance Roots. Directed and choreographed by Jon Maya, they have created an innovative new style based on traditional Basque. The four dancers joining Maya on stage are Urko Mitxelenaalain Maya, Nerea Vesga, Izar Aispuru and Benat Salegi.

Maya considers his style to be contemporary dance that takes the form of deep-rooted and ancestral dance along with modern day performance techniques. One of the main characteristics that has seen him hailed as an extraordinary choreographer is his ability to combine different artists and artistic disciplines to create out of the ordinary performances.

Playing live music to Maya’s Roots will be Oreka TX, a highly awarded music group. They were founded in 1997 and include members Harkaitz Martinez de San Vicente, Mikel Urgante, Juanjo Otxandonera, Mixel Ducau and Iñigo Eguia.

Oreka TX will also play for the Japan-based dance company for their choreography Hybrid*k by artistic director and choreographer Motoko Hirayama. The choreography explores the moment of the appearance of a new species through hybridisation. What makes this choreography unique is how it incorporates different styles of contemporary dance. Barabbas Okuyama uses a kind of avant-garde dance form known as Butoh.

As a Butoh dancer, his contemporary style encompasses all the elements of fluidity in movement. The other dancers in this piece include Kotaro Mizushima and Motoko Hirayama who all together simulate all that is formed through their hybridisation. They will be accompanied by the Basque rhythms and sounds of Oreka TX as well as the euphonious Aine song Emi Toko and Fukuko Goukon.

These two countries promise two nights complete with magnificent and well thought out choreographies.

Motoko Hirayama – Hybrid*k
Dance performance by the Japanese dance group as part of the 20th Cyprus Contemporary Dance Festival. June 26. Attikon, Paphos. 8.30pm. Free. Tel: 26-955166

Kukai Dance Company – Roots
Performance by the dance group from Japan as part of the 20th Cyprus Contemporary Dance Festival. June 27. Attikon, Paphos. 8.30pm. Free. Tel: 26-955166


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