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Hiroaki Umeda (Japan) “while going to a condition”, “Adapting for Distortion” and a meeting with the Artist

Pre-sale ticket price: 10 PLN
In the day of the performance: 15 PLN

Hiroaki Umeda

Hiroaki Umeda was born in 1977 and currently lives and works in Tokyo. During his studies of photography at Nihon University (Japan), he is deeply interested to dance (classical and hip-hop) before creating his own style, influenced by high-tech and visual art.

 In 2000 Hiroaki Umeda founded his own company S20 and has made the following pieces since: Ni (2001), while going to a condition (2003), Looming (2003) and Finore (2003), which have all been presented at cuttingedge international dance festivals: Japan Dance festival (Korea), Yokohama Dance Collection (Japan), Uovo e Contemporanea (Italy), FIND Festival (Canada) etc.

While going to a condition was presented at the Rencontres Chorégraphiques Internationales (France) and was hailed as “a visual and sensorial experience… The discovery of a young artist, both original and promising”. After a residency at the Chaufferie (Philippe Decouflé’s rehearsal space), Hiroaki Umeda performed the new work Accumulated Layout in 2007 at the Théâtre National de Chaillot, Paris. Hiroaki Umeda also presented in 2007 a new version of Duo at the International Festival Via in Maubeuge, a solo performance where dancer confronts his own image. Used to international events, he performed in TorinoDanza, Culturgeist à Lisbonne, Kunsten, la Biennale de danse de Lyon RomaEuropa and Festival d’Automne à Paris in 2008. Invited in an artist residency by the Théâtre de Nîmes and the Scene nationale de Maubeuge, he created two new performances Haptic et Adapting for Distortion, where he continues his exploration of visual perceptions.

Since his first group piece project with Finnish dancers in 2008, he has started choreographing to other dancers. Also he has started working on video piece, sound piece and installations as an extension of his solo project. Hiroaki Umeda is a pluridisciplinary artist : choreographer, dancer, sound, image and lighting designer. His work is both minimal and radical, subtle and violent, and very much in touch with his contemporary Japanese roots.




‘while going to a condition’

Duration: 25 min.

Created and performed by Hiroaki Umeda

Choreographer: Hiroaki Umeda

Dancer: Hiroaki Umeda

Sound: S20

Visual Creation: S20

Production: S20

Associate production: Quaternaire (Tour Management: Aïcha Boutella – Administration: Renaud Mesini – Coordination: Joanna Rieussec)

S20 is supported by EU Japan Fest

In while going to a condition, time, punctuated by silences, dilates and triggers a sense of disorentiation. The artist’s aim is to bring the spectator to experience the time of the piece in a particular way: both slow and rapid movements will give rythm to the slow transformation occurring on stage, like a passage from one state to another. Used as a source of light, video creates a kind of magnetic force which the audience will feel and experience live.

Dominique Laulanné

Described as experiences that redefine the sensation of space and other sensory cognitions, where a performer, alone on stage, is able to exude an unusual and powerful magnetism, while going to a condition borrows from hip-hop and butoh, combining fluidity with jerkiness. Time, punctuated by silences, dilates and triggers a sense of disorentiation, while video, used as a source of light, creates a magnetic force.


“(…) In his engaging “while going to a condition,” he stood in silhouette, scarcely veering from his original position: feet planted firmly apart, with his head lowered in a gentle bow. Geometric trips of black-and-white lines flickered behind him on a large screen, synchronized to an electronic score, which despite sharp dips into crackling static was as rhythmical as a fervent drum solo.

But more potent than the score or the gimmick of the visual scenario, both designed by Mr. Umeda, was the way the slippery movement manifested itself in the choreographer’s body. Like a tin man with oil flowing freely through his veins, Mr. Umeda mirrored the pulsating score with an accumulation of motion, starting with his feet and rising gradually to overtake his buckling legs and rubbery torso (…).

Gia Kourlas, The New York Times


“(…) As Umeda’s movements became at once more fluid and demonic, you quietly wished you could go on watching him for a lot longer”.

Barbara Zuck, Columbus, USA

Fot. Shin Yamagata

Fot. Julieta Cervantes


‘Adapting for Distortion’

Duration: 20 min.

Sound: S20

Image: S20; Bertrand Baudry

Production: S20

Coproduction: Le Studio/Le Manège – Scène nationale de Maubeuge; Romaeuropa 2008

Associate production: Quaternaire (Tour Management : Aïcha Boutella – Administration : Renaud Mesini – Coordination : Joanna Rieussec)

S20 is supported by EU Japan Fest


Hiroaki Umeda has often highlighted that his abstractly-devised and strongly antinarrative works speak of the condition of contemporary man: it is therefore emblematic, even disturbing in a way, how in Adapting for Distortion the body of the performer seems to slowly fade away and go out of focus in those luminous spirals till it becomes just a vibration, a quiver of the flesh. A shadow.

Photo by Alex

Adapting for Distortion is inspired by kinetic art and uses the most recent computing developments. Distortion of time, change of movement and immobility are at the heart of this performance, using optical effects in order to “widen the power of dance and to question the role of visual perception”.

Photo by Alex
After the performance we invite you to a meeting with the artist.