Hiroaki Umeda worked with five Hungarian dancers to present his new piece DRIVES at Sziget festival, then at Trafó House of Contemporary Arts in September 2016.

The dancers who have different dance characters share a common movement system given by the choreographer. They create movement both as individuals and as a unity at the same time. In dance and visual, based on the common concept ‘pressure and stream of forces’, movement is generated on human body and computer graphics, designed by Hungarian visual artists. Sharp electronic sound and geometric abstract visual images with dance movement make strangely organic space, which audience can ‘experience’ in this piece.

One of Japan’s most exciting experimental artists, Umeda mixes butoh, hip-hop and digital technology to create multi-sensory works at once minimal and provocative. His pieces bear intensive visual elements, the focus of his choreographies is the holistic thinking with a digital background, the constant stimuli of the sensing oragns. ‘I don’t think in messages, I want to convey sensations to the audience’ – says the artist.

The creative team – Gáspár Hajdu, Gábor Papp / XORXOR, Ágoston Nagy / Binaura – behind the projection of the theatre piece works on the border of art, technology and design. Apart from their professional technology projects, cooperating with the cultural scene constitutes
significant part of their work. They have been helping the Hungarian dance and theatre world with their creative digital technology developments for many years. They have worked with the Artus Company, The Symptoms, the Forte Company, and the Rita Gobi Company among others. Their work for theatre includes new media and video art, real-time computer graphics programming, motion capture, and 3D design.

All of Umeda’s works are a free-minded strall in the  rich quadrangle of light-sound-image-body… Blinding digital images flow unstoppably: human bodies in the gleaming abundance of lights, in the captivity of grey and black ‘noisy images’… W are sat there, in the midst of a multitude of virtual stimuli, in the middle of an installation, in this curious interstellar, holistic, audiovisual landscape trying to catch for our breath, holding tight to our seats. We are on a journey.’ Csaba Králl

Hiroaki Umeda’s Kinetic Force Method and the strong technical skills of the Hungarian dancers merge in this performance. The encounter of two remote cultures: similarities and differences in the universal language of visuality. Umeda is in search of the expressions of group behaviours through dance. The preparations for his Hungarian premiere in two phases, in May Hiroaki worked for two weeks. In July the creative team was extended with a group of Hungarian video artists to complete the piece for the presentation at Sziget Festival, then at Trafó House of Contemporary Arts in September. The piece is coproduced by SÍN Culture Centre, Sziget Festival, Trafó House of Contemporary Arts and Pro Progressione Bt.

Choreographer: Hiroaki Umeda
Performer: Viktória Dányi, Ádám Frigy, Nóra Horváth, Emese Nagy, Csaba Varga
Music: Hiroaki Umeda
Creative programming, video: Ágoston Nagy, XORXOR: Zoltán Csik-Kovács, Gáspár Hajdú, Gábor Papp
Lihts: Hiroaki Umeda, Zoltán Nagy
Special thanks to: Suzuko Tanoiri, Kettinger Zoltán, Samu Bence, Csík-Kovács Zoltán

Producer: SIN Culture Centre
Coproduction partners: Trafó House of Contemporary Arts, Sziget Festival, Pro Progressione Bt.
Supporters: Japan Foundation, Workshiop Foundation

Premiered in 2016, Trafó

Trailer from SÍN Culture Centre on Vimeo.

Full length performance – if you have no password, please contact us.