Sep 06 2011
I have to confess that while I have always been a fan of dance as a participatory sport, the idea of watching a live dance performance fills me with absolute horror. Others may see poetry in motion. I, however, would much rather watch paint dry. Still, it takes all sorts, and I am more than happy to point anyone wanting to catch a live dance performance in Kuala Lumpur in the right direction. Just don’t expect to bump into me in the audience.
September is a particularly good time to see dance in Kuala Lumpur, thanks to the fourth annual MyDance Festival, which runs from the 9th to the 25th. The festival brings together three weeks of performances, showcasing both Malaysian and international talent. The range of styles is huge, drawing inspiration from wildly different cultures and traditions. The organisers (MyDance Alliance, Asia Dance Magazine and University Malaya) should be commended for keeping ticket prices affordable, with almost all the performances costing between 25 and 35 ringgit.
The two principal venues are the KL Performing Arts Centre (KLPAC) and The Actors Studio — as ever right at the heart of the best performing arts in KL. The city’s cultural life really would be so much poorer without these two excellent organisations. It should come as no surprise that even outside the festival, they are among the best places to see dance in KL.
Several other venues will host either performances from the main festival, or what the organisers describe as adjunct events. One of these is the Temple of Fine Arts in Brickfields, which plays a vital role in keeping alive Indian culture and traditions in KL. As well as teaching dance and music, the TFA also puts on regular performances. Dance features strongly, but so do concerts and plays.
For those who want a more interactive experience, several workshops are being held in conjunction with the festival. They range from learning about classical Malay, to hip pop dance techniques. Some of the workshops are free, while most cost between 25 and 35 ringgit. For a full rundown of the workshops, follow this link. Tickets for the events and workshops are available from the venues themselves, or online from iLasso tickets.
MyDance Festival 2011
Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre
Sentul Park, Jalan Strachan, Kuala Lumpur
T: (03) 4047 0910 (enquiries); (03) 4047 0900 (box office)
The Actors Studio @ Lot 10
The Rooftop, Level 8A, Lot 10 Shopping Centre, 50 Jalan Sultan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur
T: (03) 2142 2009 (box office)
Temple of Fine Arts
114 & 116 Jalan Berhala, Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur
T: (03) 2274 3709
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