Sutra 2013: Ni Hao!


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Ni Hao! (Hello!)

Hannah Bixby and Lauren Hawke here! Currently we are feeling extremely lucky to be on tour with the international phenomenon Sutra, shadowing Heather Knight; tour coordinator for Dance Consortium at Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff and Sadler’s Wells, London.

A small box used in rehearsals if you look closely you can see a name inscribed inside

We have learnt an array of new things so far, a lot of which has been about ourselves – our future career paths and the reality of the world outside education. It’s safe to say we will emerge from this experience even more driven and passionate about the dancing world!

Both of us have been overwhelmed by the power of dance, something that is so distinctly evident in this production. The director/choreographer, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and one of his assistant choreographers, Ali Thabet are from Belgium; their main language being Flemish, his other assistant choreographer Damien Fournier is French. The Gentlemen of The Shaolin Temple speak Mandarin Chinese and the majority speak little or no English. Antony Gormley, visual creator/designer originates from North England and Composer/Pianist, Szymon Brzóska is Polish.

The fact that these groups of people have created something meaningful, brought a variety of cultures together through movement, Kung Fun, Tai Chi and dance is astonishing.

Sutra dressing room

We’ve had a first hand experience of rehearsals, get in, get outs, front of house organisation, all things tickets and all things in between e.g. sourcing shavers for the Monks to achieve a clean shaved head before opening night at a new venue! Things that we wouldn’t have thought to consider before!

Opening night at Sadler’s Wells and we were very much looking forward to it! For future performances we’re excited to see how Damien gets on with his first show on this tour, and which of the little monks will perform their debut performance, we wish them all the best of luck till we join them again in Salford and Edinburgh!

  • Post-Show reception

  • Post-Show reception

  • The Sutra Monks with ‘The Amazing Warriors’ who are based in London and are the UK’s number one Shaolin Kung-Fu display team, who have had their own TV series and international appearances!

  • On stage rehearsals at Sadler’s Wells