Xiao Ke

Written by Xiao Ke

Directed by Jérôme Bel


November 29, 2022, 15:00

November 30, 2022, 15:00

WHERE: Studio Theatre of the Grand Theatre

Duration: 65 minutes (without intermission)

Performed in Chinese, with English subtitles


The most minimalist and touching work I have seen this year! The ingenious structure reveals the truth via the dancer's telling of her personal history. The body is the dancer's theatre; it had no need to be grandiose because it was already enough to build a slice of history and move the heart.

 Beixiaojing Theatre Appreciation, A Knife for Rigidity

The perfect fusion of monologue and dance, with strong cooperation between language and body. Xiao Ke gives us a deep conception of "her" on the stage. In this one-hour work, a person's memories were superimposed, amplified, and deformed. We saw her act in her different life stages and finally disappear into her 41-year-old body. Her name is Xiao Ke.

 Zhu Ren, Xiao Ke, Performer: Xiao Ke

Along with the narration, Xiao Ke shows the audience the dances she has done: Chinese folk dance, Chinese classical dance, disco and breakdance, commercial dance, modern dance, conceptual dance, square dance, various once prevalent dances that correspond to their historical periods. Now Xiao Ke is 41 years old; she danced her way out of a resume, and has also laid out a new Chinese history to the audience in the form of personal history.

 Li Dawang, 1 Hour, Dance to Show Your Resume

She immersed herself in her own life throughout the performance. It was as if she were standing alone in the river of time, observing the struggling life of a stranger.

 Willy Tsao

What is condensed on the stage is a personal history of dance, which embodies how the inner strength of dance itself undergoes the flow of time. It is an internal dialogue between the artist and herself.

 Qing Qing, Xiao Ke, a Person's Dance and an Era

About Xiao Ke

Xiao Ke is presented by Xiao Ke telling her own dance life. This work, reflecting the evolution of Chinese dance art and culture in the past 40 years, is the result of a long-distance collision and exchange between the two choreographers during the global epidemic. During the period of home quarantine in 2020, the two artists completed this special work by means of network conference and online rehearsal, which makes the creation more experimental and pioneering.


Concept: Jérôme Bel

by and with: Xiao Ke

Lighting & Sound Design: Zihan

Co-production: Centre Pompidou x West Bund Museum (Shanghai), Les Spectacles Vivants - Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris), R.B. Jérôme Bel

With the help of the French Embassy in China.

About Jérôme Bel

In his early works, Jérôme Bel applied structuralist operations to dance in order to single out the primary elements from the theatrical spectacle. His interest subsequently shifted from dance as a stage practice to the issue of the performer as a particular individual. He emphasizes the desire to dance instead of choreograph. He has been invited to contemporary art biennials and museums, where he has put on performances and shown films. In 2005, he received a Bessie Award for the performances of The Show Must Go On in New York. In 2008, with Pichet Klunchun, he won the Routes Princesse Margriet Award for Cultural Diversity (European Cultural Foundation) for the performance Pichet Klunchun and Myself. Disabled Theater was chosen in 2013 for the Theatertreffen in Berlin and won the Swiss Present-day Dance Creation Prize.

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