[K-Dance NOW #2] Beyond Black by Korea National Contemporary Dance Company

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K-Dance NOW #2


Beyond Black

Korea National Contemporary Dance Company


September 25 at 7:00 p.m. - September 27 at 7:00 p.m.


48 hours limited time

@Vimeo: vimeo.com/460583420


The choreographer explores the possibility of AI choreography based on the assumption that “if AI continues to evolve and develop, it will be able to create art, which is considered as our own human realm.” Our ‘body’ bearing traces of numerous hours of the past and ‘AI’ which is built on an enormous amount of data coexist in the present while going through a similar process of evolution. Beyond Black presents creative outputs in the present space through a contrast between the bodies of dancers and AI technology. The work portrays the present of surreal possibilities rather than a perfect proof of the assumption. 


The Korea National Contemporary Dance Company


Established in 2010, the Korea National Contemporary Dance Company (KNCDC) is Korea's only national contemporary dance company. Through dance created in collaboration with artists with exceptional creative capacities, KNCDC aspires to create Korean contemporary dance which tells stories of history, society and daily lives of contemporaneity that can be appreciated across regions and by all generations. Following the first artistic director Hong Seungyup, the second artistic director Ahn Aesoon, and the third artistic director Ahn Sungsoo, in February 2020 choreographer Nam Jeongho succeeded as the 4th artistic director of KNCDC.


As an organization that specializes in creation of new productions, KNCDC seeks to realize diverse contemporary values in dance performances. KNCDC produces productions by inviting choreographers with authentic artistic directions and selecting most suitable dancers for each project. Furthermore, by protecting the rights of the artists, KNCDC enables artists to freely express individuality within the dance company’s stable system.


KNCDC continues to work to provide the best environment for dance where the artists and audience can grow together. And as a platform where artists and audiences meet, the company hopes to form a healthy ecosystem where diverse values can coexist. Moreover, KNCDC plans to enrich the lives of citizens through their experiences with dance at close proximity in their day to day life.


Choreographer Shin Changho


Shin Changho is a choreographer known for his choreography full of powerful energy and his experimental work oscillating between present and future. In Man-Made, for which he collaborated with the National Dance Company of Korea in 2018, he experimented with combining technology and dance using Virtual Reality and later staged the work IT dealing with the theme of AI for the 40th Seoul Dance Festival. His new work Beyond Black is a result of his continued exploration of technology and future.


In 1999 when he was a student at the School of Dance of Korea National University of Arts, he was selected as a member of the Transitions Dance Company of the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in UK. He was one of the founding members of the LDP Dance Company (founded in 2001) and served as representative of the LDP for 6 years from 2009. He also worked as a regular member of the Dance Company Theater St. Gallen in Switzerland from 2005 to 2006. 


Shin, who has an extensive experience of working for national and international dance troupes, has made a splendid achievement as his works were exported abroad: his signature works No Comment and Platform were exported to Austria as the repertoires of The Ballet Company of TLT Innsbruck. It is the first case that the works by a Korean choreographer were exported to a European professional ballet company as fixed repertoires. From 2012 to 2017, he was also invited as a guest choreographer for this dance company. 


His major choreographic works include No Comment, Parallel Life, Long Slow Distance, It's My Life, Platform, Eye-to-Eye Contact, This performance is about me, Exploration of the Body, Graying, March, Man-Made and IT. Not only has he been actively engaged in choreographic activities, but he has served as professor of the Department of Dance Performance, School of Dance at Korea National University of Arts since 2013 while nurturing new dancers in the education field.


Al Dancer ‘Madi’


‘Madi’ is Korea’s first dancing AI. It means literally a ‘joint’ (called ‘madi’ in Korean), a point at which bones meet, and a ‘connection’ between humans and AI. The media art group SLITSCOPE developed AI for this work in collaboration with choreographer Shin Changho. 


The movements of 8 dancers are turned into data and ‘Madi’ learns the data for its choreography. The dancers are filmed against a chroma-key background and their movements are extracted and input into the program. The input data are simplified into dots and lines through coding; Shin used algorithms to rearrange them in a unique way. 256 minutes of learning led to creating movements corresponding to approximately 1,000 minutes. As the amount of learning increases, the movements became more elaborate, thereby creating Beyond Black, a performance with high-quality choreography. The choreography by ‘Madi’ is embodied by the bodies of the dancers, and the audience can see the reality of ‘dancing AI’ as the video is projected onto LED panels. 



2020 June 26 - 27 through Online Streaming 



Choreography :  Shin Changho 

Film Director : Kang Seungpyo

Creative Advisor : Lee Yongwoo

Lighting Design : Kong Younwha

Stage Design : Lee Taeyang

Video / Media Art : Kim Jaemin

Music : Jang Jiho

Costume Design : Choi Insook

AI Development : SLITSCOPE (Kim Jaemin, Kim Keunhyoung)

Dancers : Kim Yeona, Kim Junki, Park Jihee, Jang Solyn, Choi Yewon, 

               Choi Jeonghong, Han Daegyo, Ham Heewon, Jung Dayeon(Madi’s voice)

Pictures : Haemil Pictures Inc.


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