Éric Minh Cuong Castaing
Coming from the world of film animation, the choreographer Éric Minh Cuong Castaing combines dancers and new technologies in his works, examining our perceptions of bodies and their apprehension in dealing with these tools.
Éric Minh Cuong graduated from the Ecole de l’image des Gobelins school of visual communication and arts in Paris in 2004, and worked in animation at the start of his career. Dance came to him through hip-hop and contemporary dance which he discovered in 1997, with Nacera Belaza among others, then butoh which he learnt with Carlotta Ikeda and Gyohei Zaitsu. In 2011, he decided to mix animation and dance by putting on his first performance, Kaiju /, which combines dancers and augmented reality. Since then he has continued this work around choreographed pieces, films or performances, whether with his company Shonen (the short film Kid birds for camera, 2014), as an associate artist with the Ballet of Marseille (School of Moon, 2016, mixing dancers and robots) or with young choreographers like Silvia Costa or Alessandro Sciarroni (Aurora, 2015).
By having dancers’ bodies meet new technologies, Éric Minh Cuong Castaing wants to explore new perceptions of bodies, augmented or transformed. He questions our vision of reality faced with the virtual, the organic gesture faced with artificial movement.
The choreographer takes an interest in all body types to understand their resonance with technological tools. He therefore stages children with humanoid robots in his performance School of Moon (2016), or physically disabled people interacting with dancers thanks to virtual reality in L’âge d’or (The Golden Age) (2016). His last creation Phoenix (2018) combines dancers with drones, and artists on stage with artists in Gaza through a system of live videos.
From the outset of his career as a choreographer in 2011, Éric Minh Cuong Castaing has injected international experiences into his work in France. He did a research residency at the Circuit-Est in Montréal, Canada, in 2015, has undertaken cultural actions and conferences in Düsseldorf in Germany in 2018 all while attracting attention at the Oklahoma Dance Film Festival in the United States.
Phoenix, the performance he created in 2018, stems from a journey to Beirut in Lebanon where Éric Minh Cuong Castaing ponders bodies of the Middle East. To do so, he worked with artists of the Gaza strip like Mumen Khalifa or the Myuz GB Crew. This performance — composed of dancers on stage, videos and drones— has been shown in several countries and notably in the Belgian festival Charleroi Danse or at the Dublin Dance Festival in Ireland.
Éric Minh Cuong Castaing created his first performance, Kaiju, where dancers mix with augmented reality.
His short film Kid birds for camera tours festivals in Romania, Greece, Spain, Argentina or Turkey.
For 2 years, Éric Minh Cuong Castaing was the associate artist of the Marseille Ballet, where he created his performance School of Moon.
His performance Phoenix is being presented in September at the Roma Europa festival in Italy after a two-year tour.
Éric Minh Cuong Castaing is part of the RomaEuropa Festival to present the project Phoenix in 2020
In 2020, Éric Minh Cuong Castaing was selected to spend time at the Villa Kujoyama, a residency for artists in Japan supported by the Institut français.
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