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Dances from Asia: Topeng

May 24, 2009 at 16:00P'tit BonheurAnnick Brault (Québec)

Topeng Dance is a traditional masked dance of Bali, usually performed by men. The Balinese have a special reputation for their mastery of the art of mask, and many artists, especially in the contemporary theatre milieu are interested in their work. Topeng Dance, which originates at least in the 9th century, celebrates different heroes from the past, each of whom have a specific mask. This dance is still done today in temples for various ceremonies which mark the Balinese year.

The performance will be followed by presentation by the artist on her experience in Bali where, as a Quebec-born woman, she delved into the universe of artistic customs built over the centuries many of which we are not aware.

ANNICK BRAULT holds a BA in Contemporary Dance from UQAM (University of Quebec in Montreal) (2001) and has spent almost two years in Bali. She has earned a certificate in traditional dance from the Arts Institution of Indonesia in Bali in 2004. Following this, she specialized in male and mask dance under the tutelage of I Made Djimat. Now, as well as working in contemporary dance, Annick actively participates in the promotion of the Balinese art through her performances and teaching. She has mastered more than twenty of the traditional Balinese dances of different techniques and types: dances for female, androgynous, males as well as Topeng masks, including the traditional and popular Topeng Pajegan. She has pursued her studies in teaching dance at UQAM since 2008.