Contemporary dance to attract Cambodians

Drawing on one hand and holding the ink on the other hand, one Sahasamai dancer is trying to dance to paint a picture with his emotion. This kind of dancing performance may look unfamiliar because of its different styles. Sahasamai, or contemporary dance, is well-known for its mixing concepts from traditional to modern cultural contexts.

A contemporary dancer Sorn Setpheap during his performance. / Photo supplied Sahasamai dance is a creative dance that performers try to make different kinds of artistic dance with an idea or sometimes by drawing to express the meaning of any story.

Sorn Setpheap, a Sahasamai dancer in Reyum Institute of Arts and Culture, told CambodiaCircles, “It is not much about mixing between music and meaning, but it persuades to have a critical thinking with the art background before acting Sahasamai Dance.”

There are several types of Sahasamai dancing. It combines special activities with modern and classic songs, modern and classic clothes together with either one or a group of performers depending on the meaning of the story.

“We faced many challenges before performing and spent much time acting with other performers”, Setpheap said.

Setpheap further recalled his feeling when he first danced, “On the first day of Sahasamai dance with trainers, we don’t understand the process of dance until the last day of mock performing that we can understand the meaning of the story.”

A contemporary dancer Sorn Setpheap during his performance Sahasamai requires dancers to perform something depending on the meaning composed by each actor.  “Mostly, we act with only one woman and more than two men in each story with mix cultural clothes”, expressed Kun Sotha, who is one of Sahasamai dancers in Reyum.

Setpheap and Sotha reminded that they felt embarrassed the first time they performed on stage with unfamiliar dancing styles. Sometimes other people criticized “this is the crazy performance since we wear unusual clothes.

“We can do it even though no one feels familiar with Sahasamai,” they said, adding that they also get support from some local and international audiences.

Basically, Sahasamai is not new; however, it has not grabbed a lot of attention from the public yet. More often, Sahasamai dancing is seen in European festivals or exhibitions in both Cambodia and European countries.

Now they create a group of Sahasamai dancers because they hope Cambodian people could understand the dancing as it has already been widely known in Europe.

Article by: Muong Vandy
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About Writer:

Vandy profileMuong Vandy is a sophomore of Media Management at the Department of Media and Communication. She loves writing in the hope that she can share information she knows to inform, entertain, and educate people in the society. When she has free times, she reads various pieces written by other writers to improve her knowledge in different fields, and she writes on different sections to practice her writing styles. Besides that, she mostly spends her time with the family and friends because she does not want to be isolated all the time. She has worked as a freelance reporter for a local media since she was in year 1 and started working….She started working for the CambodiaCircles in November 2011. She said she wanted to be a professional journalist in the future so that she would be able to keep informing people what they should know.