Speakers











BILQIS HIJJAS (MALAYSIA)

Bilqis Hijjas writes, produces, performs and teaches about dance in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. As the President of MyDance Alliance, a membership organisation supporting dance in Malaysia, she has programmed and produced recurring performance platforms, dance festivals, and mentorship programmes for emerging choreographers, as well as various other local productions and workshops.  

Bilqis also directs the dance programme at private arts centre Rimbun Dahan, outside Kuala Lumpur, which offers residencies for contemporary dance choreographers. Rimbun Dahan is the venue for the annual Dancing in Place weekend of site-specific works, and the Southeast Asian Choreolab for emerging contemporary dance choreographers from the region.

Bilqis lectures in dance criticism and performing arts theory at University of Malaya. She runs Critics Republic, an online platform for written criticism of Malaysian art, which seeks to encourage critical discussion among the audience. 

Bilqis is also the Vice President for Southeast Asia for the volunteer regional organisation World Dance Alliance Asia-Pacific. In this capacity, she would like to continue her work building bridges between the contemporary dance communities in the region: facilitating discussions, collaboration and performance circuits.



SPEAKING AT:

Artistic Direction as Thought Leadership










CHARLENE RAJENDRAN (SINGAPORE)

Charlene Rajendran is a theatre educator, dramaturg and writer, whose involvement in experimental performance began when she was a teenager, working with pioneering Malaysian children’s theatre director, Janet Pillai. She has performed, directed and written for the theatre, as well as facilitated theatre workshops and dialogues. More recently she has been dramaturg in interdisciplinary and collaborative arts projects such as Both Sides, Now (Drama Box and ArtsWok, 2013-2018), Ghost Writer (The Necessary Stage, 2016), The Malay Man and His Chinese Father (Akulah Bimbo Sakti, 2016) and It Won’t Be Too Long: The Cemetery (Drama Box, Singapore International Festival of Arts 2015). In 2017 she planned and facilitated Seminar in Singapore, produced by Pro Helvetia and Singapore International Festival of Arts, in which twelve international artists participated in a week-long dialogue and exploration of performance and culture.

Charlene also researches contemporary performance, issues of identity and play-based pedagogies, with a view to expanding contextually-based discourses on performance-making and arts education. Most recently she co-edited Excavations, Interrogations, Krishen Jit and Contemporary Malaysian Theatre (Five Arts Centre, 2018), and has published in varied academic and creative platforms. She is currently a member of the Internal Advisory Committee for UNESCO-NIE Centre for Arts Research in Education (CARE) and the Co-Director of Asian Dramaturgs’ Network.


SPEAKING AT:

ADN Report
Artistic Direction as Thought Leadership [PROVOCATEUR]











HIROMI MARUOKA (JAPAN)

Hiromi Maruoka is President of the Japan Center, Pacific Basin Arts Communication (PARC) and Director of the Performing Arts Meeting in Yokohama (TPAM). In these roles, she provides opportunities to connect people with people, and people with places, both in Japan and overseas. In 2003, she set up the Postmainstream Performing Arts Festival (PPAF) to bring foreign productions to Japan. Maruoka also conducted the Asia Satellite Meetings (2008, 2011) of the International Network for Contemporary Performing Arts (IETM), and in 2012 initiated the festival Sound Live Tokyo. She is Vice President of the Open Network for Performing Arts Management (ON-PAM) and also one of the founders.



SPEAKING AT:

Artistic Direction as Thought Leadership











Ho Tzu Nyen
HO TZU NYEN (SINGAPORE)

Ho Tzu Nyen is a Singapore-born filmmaker and visual artist whose practice spans video, writing, and theatre. His work explores the structure and power of myths, often revealing stories as discursive probes to shape past and present. His theatrical works have been presented at the Asian Arts Theatre, Gwangju, Wiener Festwochen, Theater der Welt and the Kunstenfestivaldesarts, his films were shown at Cannes Film Festival and Venice International Film Festival. Recent solo exhibitions at Guggenheim Museum Bilbao and Mori Art Museum.


SPEAKING AT:

The Political in Arts










JAE LEE KIM (SOUTH KOREA)

Jae Lee Kim is living and working in Seoul as a dramaturg, dance theorist and lecturer. Currently she is working as an adjunct professor in Department of Dance at Sungkyunkywan University in Korea. She received her PhD from the Department of Dance at Ewha Womans University in 2012, and also undertook a Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Department of Performance Arts at Kookmin University in Korea in 2013. As an academic, she has worked with The Society for Dance Documentation and History, The Korea Laban Movement Institute, and The Dance Research Institute at Ewha Womans University in Korea from 2011 to 2016.

As a dramaturg, Jae Lee was resident dramaturg at the Korea National Contemporary Dance Company from 2013 to 2015. While at KNCDC, she mainly worked with Ahn Ae Soon, an artistic director/choreographer, but also collaborated with visiting artists. After leaving KNCDC, she continued to work as a freelance dramaturg and an artistic coordinator for works including Choreography Laboratory (Korea National Contemporary Dance Company, 2014-2015) and Emerging Choreographer's Class (Hankook Performing Arts Center, 2012).  In 2017, she co-curated the 1st Seoul International Choreography Workshop.

As a scholar in dance, Jae Lee received certification for Laban Movement Analysis in New York (2004) and has published books such as Reading Body and Movement (2010) and Integrated Body-Movement-World (2016).  She was awarded the research grants Emerging Researcher Program from National Research Foundation of Korea in 2016, and the Academic Future Generation from National Research Foundation of Korea in 2017.  Jae Lee has also contributed articles to many journals for dance and choreographic studies in Korea. She recently published the articles Actuality of Performance Archive (2017) and Choreographic Approach on Archive (2017).


SPEAKING AT:

The Political in Arts
Continuing Topics in Dramaturgy










JANICE POON (HONG KONG)

Janice Poon is a Hong Kong-based theatre artist and cultural practitioner, and Lecturer (playwriting) and Academic Project Coordinator at the School of Drama, Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts. She is also the Artistic Director of theatre collective Hong Kong Dramatists. She engages in cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural creative work through playwriting, directing, dramaturgy and curating. Her works have been presented in major cities in Europe, the US, China and other Asian cities. And Then, I Float was awarded four major awards and nominated best play at the Hong Hong Theatre Libre, and invited as part of a cultural exchange project at the SCHILLERTAGE festival of National Theatre Mannheim; and Small Waisted won the Multi-cultural Short Plays Competition organised by International Theatre Institute/UNESCO.



 SPEAKING AT:

Continuing Topics in Dramaturgy










KAKU NAGASHIMA (JAPAN)

As one of pioneering dramaturgs in Japan, Kaku Nagashima has collaborated with many theatre directors and companies. Kaku also translated plays by contemporary, modern and classical authors including Samuel Beckett, Sarah Kane, Jon Fosse, Alan Harris, William Shakespeare and Henrik Ibsen. He is a member of Shigeki Nakano + Frankens. 

His major dramaturgical works: Atomic Survivors (2007, Tokyo International Festival, dir. Hatsumi Abe), ZooZooScene (2008, an adaptation from Zoo Story performed in a real zoo in Yokohama, Japan, dir. Shigeki Nakano), Cho-tancho (2010, a rap-music adaptation from The Seagull, dir. Shigeki Nakano), Les Grandes Vacances (2013, a butoh / dance performance inspired by a Japanese Sci-Fi novel, chor. Kakuya Ohashi), Le Nozze di Figaro and Don Giovanni (Nissay Opera 2012 and 2015, dir. Tomo Sugao). 

Kaku also participated in international collaborations: Performing Women - 3 Reinterpretations from Greek Tragedy (2007, The Japan Foundation, a collaboration of India, Iran, Uzbekistan and Japan), The Opportunity of Efficiency (2013, New National Theatre Tokyo with National Theatre Wales, dir. John McGrath), Rashomon | Yabunonaka (Festival/Tokyo14, with Al-Kasaba Theatre, Palestine, dir. Yukari Sakata), Double Tomorrow (2017, Engeki Shudan (Theatre Collective) EN, dir. Fabien Prioville)

In recent years, Kaku became interested in bringing theatrical ideas and techniques out of the theatre to the town and takes part actively in art projects such as: Series of The House of Atreus (2010- ), Kaku Nagashima’s How-To-Make-Laboratory: Someone’s Dream (2013-16, Tokyo Art Point Project), “← (Yajirushi, or Arrow)” (Saitama Triennale 2016). 

Kaku teaches at Tokyo University of the Arts, ZA-KOENJI / Creative Theatre Academy and Aichi University. 


SPEAKING AT:

Social Change/Action in Japanese Dramaturgy









KEI SAITO (JAPAN)

Kei Saito is a performing arts administrator and producer currently based in Chizu Town, Tottori Prefecture. Born in Tokyo in 1974, he moved to Tottori in 2006 and helped set up BIRD Theatre Company and BIRD Theatre, where he managed the venue, performances, festivals and international projects. He left the company in 2016. He is also a board member of the Open Network for Performing Arts Management (ON-PAM).


SPEAKING AT:

Continuing Topics in Dramaturgy










KEN TAKIGUCHI (JAPAN)

Ken Takiguchi was a research fellow at the Theatre Studies Programme, Department of English Language and Literature, National University of Singapore. He obtained his PhD in Japanese Studies from National University of Singapore, specialising in theatre translations, intercultural theatre and cultural policy.

As a theatre academic, Ken was an Assistant Convener of a conference titled Unfinished Business: Krishen Jit’s Performance Practice and Contemporary Malaysian Theatre held in Kuala Lumpur in January 2015. He convened a symposium on Malaysian theatre for the Japan Association for Malaysian Studies in December 2015. Ken is also the Deputy Director and Translation Editor for an online archive project called the Asian Shakespeare Intercultural Archive.

Ken also works in theatre as a dramaturg, translator and producer. He started his practice when he was the Assistant Director of the Japan Foundation Kuala Lumpur. He has actively participated in numerous intercultural productions, including Spring in Kuala Lumpur (2004, Five Arts Centre [Malaysia] & Pappa Tarahumara [Japan]); Reservoir (2008, TheatreWorks [Singapore]); Mobile 2: Flat Cities (2013, The Necessary Stage [Singapore]); and HOTEL (2015, W!ld Rice [Singapore]).



SPEAKING AT:

Social Change/Action in Japanese Dramaturgy [PROVOCATEUR]










LEOW PUAY TIN (MALAYSIA)

Leow Puay Tin creates texts for performance through writing original pieces and/or using extracts of text culled from published and oral sources such as transcripts, articles, stories, songs, etc. Her way of working as a writer has moved over the years, from devising to writing and to text curation. She started out as a performer of self-devised texts by working first with director Chin San Sooi, and then with director and critic Krishen Jit who introduced her to the concept of using chance to generate a performance in their first project together called Tikam-Tikam: And Her Grandmother Said (1983). Krishen, who passed away in 2005, directed all her solo performances, with the last one in 2003 (Woman Ice-Seller), as well as her three major performance texts (Three Children, A Modern Woman Called Ang Tau Mui and Family). His search for the truth, whether to be found in a performance text, performance, or casual chat, his natural curiosity about people and his respect for the quirks and complexities of life had made a deep impression on her and her work as a performer, writer and educator. In 2017, Puay Tin took leave from Sunway University in Malaysia to spend six months in Japan on an Asia Center fellowship looking at site-specific performances by way of developing and clarifying her thoughts on using site as a starting point for the creation of performance and texts for performance which are grounded in reality.  



SPEAKING AT:

Social Change/Action in Japanese Dramaturgy










LI YINAN (CHINA)

Li Yinan is Professor for Dramaturgy and Theatre Studies at the Central Academy of Drama of China, Beijing. Since 2009, she has been making efforts to introduce the German concept and working methods of Dramaturgy into China. At the beginning of 2015, she established the Faculty of Dramaturgy and Applied Theatre at the Central Acedemy of Drama and took up its Director position.

Yinan's major dramaturgical work include YouMou (2015, Have/Have Not), About the Beautiful New World (2015), About Disappearance (2014), Stockholm Syndrome (2010), and Miss Special (2009). She was Chief Dramaturg at the Caochangdi Workstation, Bejing in 2007, and the Resident Dramaturg of Lin Zhaohua Theatre Studio, Beijing, in 2004.

Yinan is a 2012 recipient of the NCET (the programme for New Century Excellent Talents in university) Fellowship from the Ministry of Education, China.



SPEAKING AT:

The Political in Arts










LIM HOW NGEAN (MALAYSIA/AUSTRALIA)

Lim How Ngean is a performance-maker, dramaturg and dance researcher who has been actively involved in the performing arts for over 20 years. He is also the founding director of the Asian Dramaturgs' Network, which held its inaugural symposium in Singapore in April 2016. Earlier in his career, he performed in productions in Singapore and Malaysia as well as wrote reviews and features on dance and theatre for the Malaysian press.

In recent years, How Ngean has served as dramaturg for dance performances at the Singapore Arts Festival and Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay. He has dramaturged for critically-acclaimed choreographers and dance groups, such as the Amrita Performing Arts Group (Cambodia), Daniel Kok (Singapore), Kuik Swee Boon (Singapore), Ming Poon (Singapore), and Pichet Klunchen (Thailand). His latest work was What Price Your Dance?, a collaboration with Dance Box Kobe, performed in February 2016 in Kobe, Japan.

In 2006, How Ngean was awarded a visiting fellowship under the Asian Public Intellectual programme of the Nippon Foundation, during which he researched contemporary dance in Tokyo for eight months. He was awarded the British Council Chevening Scholarship in 2007 to study his MA in Royal Holloway London. He was conferred his PhD in 2014 from the National University of Singapore for his research on contemporary dance choreography in Southeast Asia.



SPEAKING AT:

ADN Report
Continuing Topics in Dramaturgy [FACILITATOR]










LINDA MAYASARI (INDONESIA)

Linda Mayasari is Director at Cemeti - Institute for Art and Society, where she has worked since 2010, as well as a member of the associate curatorial assistant for the Indonesia Dance Festival. She is currently completing a Masters programme in Religious & Cultural Studies at Sanata Dharma University, whilst pursuing personal research and writing exploring the intersections of art, politics and post colonialism within the cultural and historical context of Indonesia. Occasionally she works collaboratively with artists from various fields (particularly dance and visual art) to produce independent research based projects. Previously, Linda worked as a program manager at Bagong Kussudiardja Foundation (2008 - 2010), a performing art space in Yogyakarta, and was a member of Gandrik Theatre (2009 - 2015). She has attended numerous international forums on the visual and performing arts including Asia Arts Space Network, Korea in 2015,  Setouchi Asian Forum, Japan in 2016, Monsoon Platform, Belgium in 2017.



SPEAKING AT:

Artistic Direction as Thought Leadership









MASASHI NOMURA (JAPAN)

Masashi Nomura is a dramaturg and producer. Since 2007, he has been with theatre company Seinendan (founded by Oriza Hirata) at Komaba Agora Theater as its manager/administrator. As a dramaturg, he has worked with on several young artists' works. From 2008 to 2015, he has dramaturged for the productions of Sample theatre company, created by director and playwright Shu Matsui. He has also worked as a dramaturg on several productions with Mamagoto theatre company, helmed by Yukio Shiba. With Okazaki Art Theatre, he was a producer on Black coffee (not for drinking) (2013) and a dramaturg on The Story of Descending the Long Slopes of Valparaiso (2017). Both works were nominated for the Kunio Kishida Drama Award.

At the annual Performing Arts Meeting in Yokohama (TPAM), Masashi curated and produced the following performances: Trojan Women (2015) by Tadashi Suzuki of SCOT; Hikki Cancun Tornado by Hideto Iwai of hi-bye theatre company; Girl X – Japan-Thailand Collaboration (2015) by Suguru Yamamoto of theatre collective Hanchu Yuei and Thanapol Virulhakul of Democrazy Theatre; Girl X (2014) by Suguru Yamamoto of Hanchu Yuei; Composition: New Philharmonic (2014) by Shuta Hasunuma; Time (2012) by Shuta Hasunuma and Ryota Yamada; and Sayonara (2011) and I Worker (2011) by Oriza Hirata of Seinendan theatre company and the Osaka University Hiroshi Ishiguro lab.

Masashi is also the chief program officer of the Okinawa Prefectural Foundation for Cultural Promotion (Okinawa Arts Council). He also works as a lecturer of performing arts management at Obirin University, and is a board member of the Open Network for Performing Arts Management (ON-PAM). He was previously a researcher at the Arts Council Tokyo Arts Academy, and a member of the Asahi Art Square management committee.

In 2016, Masachi was in Künstlerhaus Mousonturm in Frankfurt as part of the Overseas Training Program for young artists, organised by the Agency for Cultural Affairs Japan.



SPEAKING AT:

Social Change/Action in Japanese Dramaturgy










ROBIN LOON (SINGAPORE)

Robin Loon is a dramaturg, academic and playwright. He currently teaches the Introduction to Theatre & Performance module as well as modules in Singapore English Language Theatre and Theatre Criticism at the Theatre Studies Programme, National University of Singapore.

Robin has consulted on many theatre projects as a dramaturg. He was Co-commissioning Dramaturg for Full Frontal (2007-2009), a directors’ incubation platform at the Singapore Arts Festival. Subsequently, he was appointed Commissioning Dramaturg for Open Studio (2010-2012), Singapore Arts Festival Platform for new works. He has also been writer and dramaturg in several projects, including Casting Back (2012, Esplanade’s 10th Anniversary), 男男自语 (2012, Singapore Arts Festival), and Blue Prince (2012, The Blue Statesmen).

Robin was also the head of Singapore's first Dramaturg Apprenticeship Programme under Centre 42's Garage initiative. The Garage is a programme conceived for fresh theatre graduates wanting to move into dramaturgy and for practitioners eager to do a mid-career switch to or emphasis on dramaturgy. It is a 12-to-18 months programme comprising theoretical and historical contextualising and two professional attachments to ongoing productions.

Robin has also represented Centre 42 at two international events : West Kowloon Cultural District's Producer's Network Meeting and Forum (May 2017) where he presented on Centre 42's content creation initiatives; and Taipei Performing Arts Centre's  Open Talk: Walking with New Talent (Nov 2017) where he and Centre 42's company Manager Ma Yanling delivered a joint key-note on Centre 42's approach to nurturing young talent.



SPEAKING AT:

ADN Report
The Political in Arts [PROVOCATEUR]
Continuing Topics in Dramaturgy [FACILITATOR]










TAUFIK DARWIS (INDONESIA)

Taufik Darwis is a dramaturg and researcher based in Bandung, the capital city of West Java province, Indonesia. He is co-founder of the Bandung Performing Arts Forum. Since March 2016, he has been a co-curator of the Indonesian Dance Festival. In 2018, Taufik has been invited as a guest curator at the Teater Garasi / Garasi Performance Institute.

In 2016, Taufik attended the Art Summit Indonesia dramaturgy workshops on dramaturgy run by Ugoran Prasad and Peter Eckersall. He was also involved in a dramaturgy forum organised by Teater Grasi in Yogyakarta, which runs presently under the name Dramaturgy Assembly.

With the Bandung Performing Arts Forum, Taufik worked as a dramaturg/director in the following productions: Cut Off: to See, See Oneself, to be Seen (2016), which reads the indigenous body as an artefact of colonialisation; Di Luar dari yang Di Luar (2016), a theatre project which reads the quality of living spaces of others in other cities through the perspective of migrants living in their new city; Malam Minggu Metal (2017), a collaborative performing arts project involving actors, choreographers, dancers, composers, and metal bands in reading the quality of life in Bandung from the standpoint of the metal community; and Membeli Ingatan (2017), a performance archive project based on dramaturgy resistance research on theatre in Bandung from 1997 to 2011. Taufik has also worked on Ari-Ari (2013), Maem Mendut (2014), To The Tit (2016), and Manusia Hotel No.00 (2017).



 SPEAKING AT:

Continuing Topics in Dramaturgy










UGORAN PRASAD (INDONESIA)

Ugoran Prasad is a fictionist, dramaturg, and performance researcher. He has been a resident artist and writer at Teater Garasi since the early 2000s and has taken part in some of the group’s main works. His fiction writing has received accolades, most notably the best selected short story from Kompas Daily Paper in 2007. An editor for theatre research journal Lebur (2004-2010), his investment in the institutionalisation of performance as a means of knowledge production is expanded as he served as a programme manager at MSPI (Indonesian Society for Performing Arts), and as programme director at Teater Garasi. He is a two-time recipient of the Asian Cultural Council fellowship (2008 and 2010-2011), during which he was a visiting scholar in the Performance Studies Department at New York University. He received the Erasmus Mundus scholarship at the MA programme in International Performance Research (University of Warwick and University of Amsterdam, 2011-2012), from which he graduated with distinction in 2013. He currently lives in New York for his doctoral study in Theatre Studies at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. He is a founding member, a lyricist and a main performer of Melancholic Bitch, a modern-rock band based in Yogyakarta.



SPEAKING AT:

The Political in Arts










VIRKEIN DHAR (INDIA)

An alumna of the School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, Virkein’s training in architecture alongside a practice in dance, has instigated explorations that cross multiple fields of creative practice. She is engaged as an independent contemporary dance collaborator, scenographer, spatial designer and curator in India. Her interests lie in exploring the applications and documenting the impacts of the arts and design outside of their normative environments.

Currently based in Delhi, she is the Festival Director at IGNITE! Festival of Contemporary Dance and leads Strategy and Programming at OddBird Theatre, while building an artistic practice that creates spatial experiences through movement, design and media.

Virkein’s research work focuses on an alternative planning strategy that includes the socio-cultural context of the built environment, and thus able to create tangible affects that arise from utilizing parameters of vibrancy and social capital as defining factors for the sustainability of future cities in India. At the moment she is working on developing an up-skilling program for creative producers and a national touring circuit in India.



SPEAKING AT:

Continuing Topics in Dramaturgy










YOSHIJI YOKOYAMA (JAPAN)

Yoshiji Yokoyama is a dramaturg at Shizuoka Performing Arts Centre (SPAC), in-charge of international exchanges. He is also a programmer of the World Theatre Festival Shizuoka since 2007, and Tokyo Festival since 2017. He is a board member of the Open Network for Performing Arts Managers (ON-PAM) and a member of the Asian Producers' Platform (APP). He lectures part-time at Gakushuin University, Tokyo, and University of Shizuoka.

Yoshiji received a PhD in Theatre Studies from l'Université Paris X in 2008. In 2016, he was awarded a grant from the Asian Cultural Council for an exchange at The Segal Theatre Center at the City University of New York Graduate Center.




 SPEAKING AT:

Continuing Topics in Dramaturgy