Flying Circus Project 1996

"When land-bound animals begin to fly
Reaching for the unknown
An unexpected transformation
Rooted but free
The same animal but different
Man's quest for flight continues
The antithesis of museum
Raw, exciting, dizzying, robust
Dangerous magic
The sacred and the profane co-exist
Theatre of the people
Hanuman, monkey, leaps into flight."

Established in 1994 by Ong Keng Sen, Artistic Director of TheatreWorks Singapore, The Flying Circus Project (FCP) is a major programme exploring Asian expression in the 21st Century. This multi-disciplinary, long-termed research and development programme in theatre, dance, music, visual arts, film and ritual has continued since 1996. This laboratory, the first with such extensive scope and continuity in Asia, looks at the different creative strategies of individual artists, both traditional and contemporary, through the recognition of differences between the many Asian cultures. The focal point is on cultural negotiation and process in the arts practice. Aided by this clash of time/space through the dynamic interaction between the performers and their clash of disciplines, the development of artists in external form, internal landscape, intellectual muscularity and politicisation become major pillars of the FCP. In 1996, the focus was the learning of traditional performing arts even though there were equal participants from both spheres of traditional and contemporary practice. Some of the participating countries included Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

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