March 12 & 13, 2010, 8:00pm
at the Centre in Vancouver for Performing Arts
777 Homer St., Vancouver
(800) 8425387March 24, 2010, 7:00pm (Demo and Lecture)
March 25, 2010, 8:00pm (Performance)
at Towson University
Stephens Hall Theatre
8000 York Road, Towson, Maryland 21252
wwwnew.towson.edu/centerforthearts/March 27, 2010, 8:00pm
at Foundation for Chinese Performing Arts
Cutler Majestic Theatre at Emerson College
219 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02116-4717
www.MAJ.orgApril 8-10, 2010, 7:30pm
at White Bird
1111 SW Broadway, Portland OR, 97205
Sound of the Ocean, a monumental work about water, was originally created in 1998 to celebrate U Theatre's 10th Anniversary for a performance at the world-renowned French Festival d'Avignon. Sound of the Ocean tells of the "water of life, which nourishes our souls." The music and drumming and movement simulate the remarkably diverse and distinctive sounds of water in its five sections: Collapse, Flowing Water, Breakers, Listening to the Ocean Heart, and Sound of the Ocean as individual drops gather together to form a stream and streams create a river which eventually rushes into the ocean. The New York Times said, "There is a great and complex beauty to the drumming, sounds and silence and simple beats and intricate meshes of precisely articulated rhythms." From the quiet tiny drops to the crashing waves of the mighty sea, Sound of the Ocean is a moving and thoroughly entertaining theatrical experience.
After years of practicing tai-chi, martial arts, and meditation, U Theatre's Artistic Director Liu Ruo-Yu and Music Director Huang Chih-Chun were inspired by the teachings of Vajrasattva, the god of wisdom, to create Meeting with Bodhisattva. The work is a rhythmically propelled physical exploration of one man's journey towards enlightenment. The story derives from four Buddhist verses that ponder the cudgel?an ancient club-like weapon used by Shaolin Monks: "One cudgel, like the sword of Vajra; one cudgel, like looking for a snake in the grass; one cudgel, like the roar of a lion; one cudgel, which is not a cudgel." These verses were developed to illustrate a warrior's path to self-actualization. Intricately layered and intensely dramatic, Meeting with Bodhisattva comprises six parts: Receiving, Sword of Spirits, Confronting, Conquering, Sword of Wisdom, and One Cudgel Which is Not a Cudgel . Meeting with Bodhisattva was first performed in 2002 at the Taipei National Theatre and has traveled to Hong Kong, Shanghai, Japan, France, Belgium, and the Philippines. In 2003, this work was awarded one of Taiwan's greatest honors in the performing arts?the inaugural Taishin Arts Award.
U Theatre, a collective of performers founded by Artistic Director Liu Ruo-Yu in 1988, makes its home on Laochuan Mountain (on the outskirts of Taipei). Liu's wish to establish U Theatre was to combine contemporary Western theatrical techniques with Zen Buddhist philosophy. Aesthetically, U Theatre's work is rooted in an ongoing exploration of indigenous Taiwanese and Chinese performance history and practice, as well as in a deep respect for the natural environment. The company's last U.S. tour includes stops in Houston Miller Outdoor Theatre and Boston prior to the BAM engagement with additional performances in Kenneth Square, PA; Carmel, CA; and San Jose, CA. The company most recently appeared at BAM with Meeting with Bodhisattva at the 2008 Next Wave Festival.