October 16-18 World Dance Alliance-Asia Pacific Dance Bridge 2015

Connectivity Through Dance

By Lucinda Coleman

The small gathering hums in the haze and heat. Excited faces greet old friends and tentatively approach new ones. There are choices of scholarly papers to hear presented, new choreographies to respond to, performative presentations to attend, as well as dance workshops and performances to enjoy. I am in Singapore to share my own research, but am drawn to the story-telling of others. There are innovative research projects that challenge and inspire, but what I find fascinating is the beauty and diversity of the individuals, all creating dance work - or in pursuit of scholarly knowledge within the field of dance.

The Asia-Pacific Dance Bridge, held in Singapore 16-18 October 2015 aimed to foster dance connectivity within the Asia-Pacific region, inspiring a community of dance performers, academics, educators, administrators and other arts practitioners to connect one-to-the-other. The conference was organized by World Dance Alliance Singapore (WDAS), hosted by Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA) and run in conjunction with the annual da:ns festival presented by the Esplanade, Singapore. The conference events were presented in partnership with Singapore’s arts industry organisations including Esplanade Theatres on the Bay (Esplanade), Lasalle College of the Arts (Lasalle), Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA), National Library Board (NLB), and School of the Arts (SOTA).

Those of us who gathered had many choices to connect with practitioners in the field.  There were unique opportunities to foster cross-cultural partnerships that could only encourage creativity in the industry and hopefully forge new artistic partnerships to enrich contemporary dance exploration in the Asia-Pacific region in the future.

Photography of WDA delegates, venue and images of Singapore by Lucinda Coleman © 2015, reprinted with permission