The idea of a dance event set in the green surroundings of the Rimbun Dahan arts residence in Kuang, Selangor is an enticing one. That’s exactly the Dancing In Place series, which celebrates contemporary and fusion works in an outdoor space. Add a collaborative dance programme, featuring international and homegrown talent, and you already have a unique weekend on the cards.

This year’s Dancing In Place, which happens at Rimbun Dahan on Jan 13-14, will feature 10 short dance works. It is presented by World Dance Alliance, MyDance Alliance and Rimbun Dahan, with dance producer/arts advocate Bilqis Hijjas at the helm.

Dancing In Place was established in 2009 by Bilqis, president of MyDance Alliance. It has had a few gap years and this year’s edition, produced by Bilqis, will mark its sixth year of being actively involved in contemporary dance.

Dancing In Place is a free admission event, with an all-ages focus.

“This year, the dance artistes – both local and international – will experience the opportunity to collaborate in producing and choreographing contemporary-based works. Collaborations from regional artistes will be a big highlight this year,” says Bilqis.


Dancing In Place event features 10 short dance works performed outdoors. Photo: Nazir Azhari

The two-day event will feature site-specific collaborations, solo works, lyrical modern dance and even a rerun of a gala night arts performance.

Alla Azura Abal Abas returns with her team of dancers, taking “birds” from classical Malay dance and putting them in trees.

Sharm Noh will present his captivating spider work, last seen in the Gala Night of Short+Sweet Dance 2017 at KLPac, while Balletbase dancers present Reflets Sur L’Eau, a lyrical modern dance work by French/American choreographer Patrick Suzeau.

JS Wong will restage his meditative but physically challenging solo with bamboo pole, performed by Tai Chun Wai.

“A particular highlight is the restaging of the Short+Sweet work, and let’s not forget the traditional Malay dance known as Timang Burung, designed by Alla, a veteran of site-specific dance and a dance department instructor in Universiti Malaya,” adds Bilqis.

She reveals that the dance programme on both days will be the same.


Bilqis hopes that the audience arriving for this year’s event will be open to the diverse dance performances and experiences. Photo: Huneid Tyeb

The South-East Asian choreographers, working together for the first time, include Chai Vivan (Malaysia) and Otniel Tasman (Indonesia), Colleen Coy (US/East Timor), Eng Kai Er (Singapore), Lee Ren Xin (Malaysia) and Ong Nitipat Pholchai (Thailand), Fadilla Oziana (Indonesia), Citra Pratiwi (Indonesia) and Sonoko Prow (Thailand), Fauzi Amirudin (Malaysia) and Sarah Maria Samaniego (Philippines), Al Bernard Garcia (Philippines) and Siko Setyanto (Indonesia).

Elsewhere, Joelle Jacinto (Philippines) returns to Malaysia with her sister Jacqui, to perform a duet choreographed by her father Eli Jacinto.

Bilqis hopes that the audience arriving for this year’s event will be open to the diverse dance performances and experiences.

The event, she adds, will also continue – rain or shine.

“It can get wet or muddy at the site. Do come with outdoor shoes. Don’t forget umbrellas and mosquito repellent. Food will also be available for purchase, but feel free to bring your own picnic.

“Dancing Is Place is all about community, and bringing people together. Dance is the unifying factor,” she concludes.

Dancing In Place is on at Rimbun Dahan, Km 27 Jalan Kuang, Daerah Kuang in Selangor on Jan 13-14. Open: 3pm to 5.30pm. Free admission. FB: Dancing In Place 2018.