Continuation of international dialogue

Immersed in the dense program of events, shows and meetings promoted by HOTPOT and TPAM, some EDN members, on February 13th  2020, met the members of the Asian Network for Dance +  (AND+) in Yokohama.

A report by Roberto Casarotto - CSC Bassano del Grappa (IT).

International meeting on alert

Our meeting was contextualized in a Yokohama on alert for the Corona virus, the Diamond Princess ship had been docked at the port for many days, the China Town and touristic sites, generally teeming with tourists, were quite deserted and in the theaters and meeting places, Western professionals started to wear for the first time protective masks, not completely aware of what would happen in the following weeks in Europe and in the rest of the world.

At the Red Brick Warehouse, the venue for the Yokohama Dance Collection - HOTPOT events, EDN members gathered and prepared before meeting Asian colleagues. Starting from a retrace the history of connections with AND + and, considering how each EDN member has developed over time relationships with organizations and artists based in the Asian continent and in Australia, we shared thoughts on how, in Europe, it is necessary to imagine new ways of dialogue and developing relationships.

Soon later the encounter took place.

The meeting with AND + immediately highlighted the need to exchange and share information to build ethical, sustainable bases on which to found our discussions. It is essential to exercise the change of perspective in approaching the encounter between forms of artistic expression that have been developed in cultural, social, geographical and political contexts other than European ones. We discussed the importance of starting to work together in order to broaden the parameters with which we often define the concepts of beauty and excellence, avoiding to exoticize and to miss opportunities to know what, from a European point of view, may appear extraneous and incomprehensible.

The need to recognize the slow processes of decoloniality undertaken in Asia and Australia, the different conditions for exercising power through the means of supporting culture, the urgency to activate research, residence, creative and performative formats that respond to non-western ways has opened many food for thought. On these points we have decided to focus some of the next meetings with the AND+ network, recognizing that the dialogue process requires time and ways of interacting to be built together.

Exploring the need to exchange and share information to build ethical, sustainable bases on which to found our discussions

In conclusion we discussed the possibility of meeting, between representatives of the two networks, in Munich for the GermanTanz Platform where we planned a closed-door meeting and a public event. It was clear that many of the Asian colleagues could not travel, due to the restrictions on mobility already activated in their countries or being implemented. So we counted on those of AND+ who would be , for professional reasons, based in Europe in March.

In the following weeks, when the escalation of the infections led my country, Italy, to put in place the restrictive measures to mobility, I often connected with colleagues from Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, somehow living similar conditions across continents has helped to bring us closer and begin the path of rapprochement that, even the short dialogues exchanged in social media, contribute to building.

Discover our international partners


In 2017, representatives of the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority initiated a discussion with a group of dance colleagues in Asia about the establishment of a new Asian dance network. Since the initial discussion, successful meetings have held in Hong Kong Jakarta, Indonesia  and Yokohama,  with participating dance professionals agreeing and finalizing the vision, mission and direction for a new network – the Asia Network for Dance (AND+) – to be launched in Hong Kong in May 2018.

The network is steered by a core group: a collective of passionate dance professionals who are committed to connect, to collaborate, to share and to lead the network’s vision and mission. AND+ is not a membership organisation and this network functions without hierarchical structure.

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The HOTPOT East Asia Dance Platform was launched as a collaborative effort from City Contemporary Dance Festival (Hong Kong, China), Seoul International Dance Festival (Korea), and Yokohama Dance Collection (Japan)—three festivals dedicated to nurturing and promoting dance artists in East Asia—bringing together their collective experience, expertise, and international networks. Encounters and conversations at the first and second iterations of HOTPOT (held in Hong Kong in November 2017 and in Seoul in October 2018, respectively) have led to a range of new opportunities for many East Asian dance artists, including performances and coproductions around the world.

Like its previous iterations, over a hundred dance presenters (such as directors and producers of theaters and festivals) from Japan and abroad will participate in the third edition of HOTPOT held in Yokohama to attend the showcase program, and also to take advantage of the networking opportunities on offer to connect with dance artists, producers, and other dance professionals from East Asia.

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TPAM – Performing Arts Meeting in Yokohama is a space where people from various places in the world who are professionally involved in performing arts get together to exchange through diverse performance and meeting programs and gain information, inspiration and network for the creation, dissemination and vitalization of performing arts. Having celebrated the 20th anniversary, it is internationally recognized as one of the most influential performing arts platforms in Asia.

TPAM started as Tokyo Performing Arts Market in 1995. In 2011, it moved to Yokohama, renamed itself as “Meeting” from “Market,” and renewed the programs as a platform for a wide range of performing arts activities not limited to “buying and selling” of productions. Since 2015, it has reinforced its Asian focus, involved itself in Asian co-productions and put even more importance than before on networking in Asia.

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Centro per la Scena Contemporanea

CSC Bassano del Grappa

Bassano del Grappa I Italy