Led by Ho Hsiao-mei, a choreographer praised as "master in creating surrealist imagination,” MeimageDance Troupe delivers strong visual effects and dynamic body movement based on Taiwanese culture. The troupe also endeavors to cultivate dance talents and invite prominent dancers overseas to return to Taiwan for creation, performance, and exchanges.
Dancing since young age, Ho has followed the path of a dance major in Taiwan and transitioned to a choreographer after finishing studies in New York. Upon returning to Taiwan in 2010, Ho decided to let go of the methods and theories she acquired in the past, and established the troupe to explore the idea of self-existence in dance through pure visual presentation.
Knowing that many talented Taiwanese dancers had to pursue further studies and seek opportunities overseas due to the relatively small modern dance scene and insufficient resources in Taiwan, Ho initiated the "Collecting Buttons: New Choreographer” project the following year to offer assistance to young dancers.
By inviting Taiwanese dancers who worked abroad to return home, the project seeks to provide opportunities for talented dancers to create and perform in Taiwan as well as cultivate inexperienced and independent choreographers through collaboration and exchanges.
So far, the project has brought 17 outstanding dancers who worked with foreign dance companies such as Germany-based Pina Bausch Company, New York-based Abarukas Contemporary Dance Company, Sweden-based GöteborgsOperans Danskompani, London-based Company Wayne McGregor, and Japan-based Noism Dance Company to perform in Taiwan.
In addition, the project offers free workshops featuring dancers from abroad to share their experiences with dancers in Taiwan and stimulate new ideas and possibilities through learning different body vocabulary and perception.
"My Dear (親愛的),” the troupe's 2013 production, explores the emotions of interpersonal relations and presents everyday scenarios through dancers who imitate puppet movements. The production, which is performed in between light and shade to create a three-dimensional space and fresh visual experience, was shortlisted by the Taishin Arts Award in 2013.
The troupe's latest production, "New Paradise of Silent Island (默島新樂園),” is a piece that rearranges elements of the troupe's previous works, including Taiwanese cultural features such as leaders of the parade, glove puppetry, temple fairs, and betel nut beauties to present the tackiness and loneliness of modern Taiwan society.
At its Hong Kong premiere last year, "New Paradise of Silent Island” was presented in an unconventional way by inviting audiences to walk with dancers on the stage. The innovative performance opened to positive reviews and was an integral part of the 2017 Taiwan Culture Festival in Hong Kong.