Thoughts on ‘She Ain’t Heavy, She’s Reaching Into Space’

On 28-29 July, we presented She Ain’t Heavy, She’s Reaching Into Space, conceived and performed by Eng Kai Er and Faye Lim at 72-13! Here’s what one of our Ambassadors, Nur Shahirah, had to say about the performance.

I recently volunteered and attended the performance of She Ain’t Heavy, She‘s Reaching Into Space by Eng Kai Er and Faye Lim. The moment I heard the title of the performance, my first impression was, “Wow, that sounds fresh”. I knew then that I was going to watch something that I’ve never seen before, and I was right. The dance style was new to me as it was based on Contact Improvisation.

To me, Contact Improvisation is really unique. This is because it focuses on what the dancers (in pairs) feel within themselves rather than to memorise and perform choreographed steps. The dance is also very raw as their bodies takes its own natural movement in response to their partner’s movements. What fascinates me the most is that both Kai and Faye move around each other with very fluid movements, and it’s as though they both share the same body.

Another unique factor in this performance was the amount of weight that the dancers ‘gave’ to each other. For example, Faye was balancing Kai on her hip and they rolled on the floor together, all whilst keeping contact with each other. This amazed me, and the first thought that struck me was “Shouldn’t it hurt to roll over someone and also to let someone roll on you?” Then it hit me: both dancers were considering the amount of weight they gave to each other, so that they don’t hurt one another and be overwhelmed with each other’s weight.

As a dancer, I realised that I’ve been limiting my own body and movements as I have only attended choreographed dance classes. Overall it was an eye-opening performance as it inspired me to try contact improvisation in future.

Thank you Shahirah for sharing with us your thoughts!

Coming up in October, TheatreWorks will be presenting its latest international co-production GALA by Jerome Bel! If you’re a dance buff, you won’t want to miss this groundbreaking piece. Head over to the GALA Blog to find out more and stay tuned for more exciting programmes here at TheatreWorks!


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