Time, Date, and Venue
About the Performance
From Bai-Shi, folk art and traditional acrobatics, to modern circus, New Circus and contemporary circus; from ancient times to modern times, from the west to the east... Today, a variety of terms, specifically and microscopically presenting different aspects of stunt performance with the core of "surpassing the daily landscape and human physical skill potential".
As one of China's Four Classic Novels, Journey to the West tells the story of Tang Sanzang's westbound travel based on Taoist cosmology, in which Xuan Zang is the prototype of the Role. However, the most detailedly described and most vivid role in the book is Sun Wukong. From Huaben (tiny script or short story) of the Song Dynasty, the traditional drama Zaju of the Yuan Dynasty, to Wu Cheng-en's novel Journey to the West in the Ming Dynasty, the image of the Monkey King has not only changed but has also transcended space and time and passed through various media in modern and recent times: comics, animation, movies, television dramas, etc. Sun Wukong became a cultural memory shared and created by people of different generation. From “stone monkey”, “The Monkey King” to “The Great Sage, Heaven's Equal“, Sun Wukong calls himself both king and sage. What does he really want? Having incredible magic skills, he wipes his name out of the Book of Life from the Hell, wreaks havoc across the Jade palace. What drives him to do such things? How would he act if he lives today?
Wukong is a monkey? The Monkey King or The Great Sage, Heaven's Equal? A Xian or a Yao? Who is Wukong exactly?
"On the top of the mountain, there is a magic stone with a magic core inside. One day it bursts open to produce a ball-sized stone egg. By the touch of the wind, it turns into a stone monkey. It has five features and all four limbs, with his eyes move, two beams of golden light shoot toward the Jade palace." This is the birth of a stone monkey that we call today "Sun wukong" in Wu Cheng-en's Journey to the West. The stone monkey passed through the Shuilian Waterfall in Mountain of Flowers and Fruit and became the Monkey King. After being given the name of Sun Wukong, he learned Cloud of Somersault and the Seventy-two Changes. He obtained the golden-banded staff from the Dragon King of the East Sea, and wiped his name out of the Book of Life from the Hell. The supernatural power of Sun Wukong alerted the heavens and the four-dimensional world. All the way from Bimawen (horse keeper in Jade palace) to The Great Sage, Heaven's Equal, he stole the magical peach and magical elixir, wreaked havoc across the Jade palace. Finally, Buddha pressured him under the Wuzhi Mountain.
Following the adaptation of the role “Ole” of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale in 2016, FOCA’s newest production - Wukong: Before the Journey to the West is based on the first seven chapter of Wu Cheng-en’s Journey to the West, rediscovering the adventure story of Sun Wukong. The entire show features circus performances such as aerial silk, cyrl wheel and hoop diving. Being coupled with high-technical tumbling and acrobat, the show interpretes the story of Sun Wukong constantly challenging himself and authoritarian.
The stage is his Paradise of Mountain of Flowers and Fruit, where he runs, leaps, climbs, and plays. As a metaphor of Shuilian Waterfall, the aerial silk is also the stream of flowing desires. The full range of juggling props is weapon that transforms, is an obstacle, and a challenge.
The Performing Group│Formosa Circus Art
Since its establishment in 2011, Formosa Circus Art is named after this beautiful island, Taiwan. FOCA’s purpose is to develop the various contemporary circus arts of Taiwan. Combining acrobatics, street culture and theatre arts, we try to create a physical vocabulary that is unique in Taiwan. Our team members come from different fields of performance, including among others acrobatics, juggling, dance and drama. Throughout 7 years, we’ve performed in many places in Taiwan and abroad, including twice in Festival d'Avignon Off in France, Taiwan Season of Edinburgh Festival Fringe in UK, DGI Sport & Culture Festival in Denmark, Taipei Arts Festival etc. Since 2014, we provide full-time occupation for our performers, became the few of the performing arts companies that have over 10 full-time members in Taiwan.
LIN, CHIH-WEI / Producer
Company Director of Formosa Circus Art
Former Cloud Gate Dance Theatre contributing Dancer
Lecturer of TED x Taipei
He initiated his performing career at the age of ten, accumulating twenty years of professional trainings and performances. He was the producer and artistic director of Pursue Our Dreams in 2012, also served as producer for Self and Others in 2014, Olé and The Light of Instant: How Long is Now? in 2016. Lin directed the American touring performance Heart of Asia in 2016.
LEE, TSUNG-HSUAN / Director
Artistic Director of Formosa Circus Art
Former Cloud Gate Dance Theatre Dancer
He was dancer for the Taipei Crossover Dance Company, the Tussock Dance Theatre, Meimage Dance, and the Cloud Gate Theatre. He choreographed and performed Run Away & D.N.A in Contemporary Dance Showcase "Asian-Male Episode" by the E-Side Dance Company. In 2015, he undertook an artist-in-residence project in Melbourne, Australia, and presented his solo piece, Shell, in “eXchange” at the Taipei Arts Festival the very same year. Lee’s works also include dance film, new media and contemporary circus. He was the choreographer of contemporary circus performance Self and Others, which was invited to perform at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Organizer: National Center for Traditional Arts
Advisor: Ministry of Culture
* Please visit the official website for all the latest updates.
* The organizers reserve the right to make changes to the event program.