An evening of Cambodian Contemporary Dance
Saturday May 2, 2015
Venue: Department of Perfoming Arts

Tonight's Program

I in Mine
Choreographer & Designer Yon Davy
Performers Yon Davy, Yon Chantha
Composer Phon Sopheap
Set builder Chen Borey

People possess different behaviors and ways of speaking. We see and hear them through their images and sound. One cannot see what is the feeling or thinking inside someone else. But if the inside is expressed, what would we see?

Choreographer Khon Chan Sithyka (Mo)
Performers Khon Chan Sith (Mo), KhonChansina (Nan), SoyChariboiey
Costume and Props Designer Noun Sovitou
Music Arrangement Khon Chansina (Nan)
Recording musicians Khon Chan Sithyka (Mo), Khon Chansina (Nari)

This work touches on journey in life. We usually encounter obstacles and challenges. Nothing is certain. Everything changes. The end of a problem can be the beginning of another. Some problems even repeat multiple times.

Rank 21
Choreographer, Performer, Designer, and Music Arrangement Chumvan Sodhachivy
Recording Musicians Pech Sarath, Noun Sovitou, Khon Chan Sithyka, Khon Chansina

In this piece, the choreographer explores the idea to describe the daily life and activities of the Khmer society, through a solo dance piece. It is inspired by a traditional poem named Chuch Noeng rei (The Trap & The Fish).

Spoken Words quoted from poem: Go forward, Get out of the way, Attack, Strength, Twist, Power, Arrogance, Disaster, Dead, Not Dead.


Chumvan_Sodhachivy (Belle) (Choreographer) began training in Cambodian classical dance in 1994 focussing mainly on the male role of the all female classical court form but is also proficient in Cambodian folk dance and shadow puppetry. Eager to develop her contemporary creative skills, Belle was accepted into Robert Wilson's Watermill Center 2006 International Summer Arts Program. Since then, Belle has participated in numerous contemporary dance workshops around the world and has been a featured dancer in works by Emmanuèle Phuon, Peter Chin, Arco Renz and others which have toured internationally. Belle has choreographed aany of her own works and was a featured dancer in Stravinsky's Persephone directed by Peter Sellars at the Teatro Real in Madrid, in CRACK — a new work of Cambodian contemporary dance by German choreographer Arco Renz that was awarded the 2012 ZKB Patronage Prize in Zurich Switzerland in September 2012, and most recently in Mahabharata by Japanese director Hiroshi Koike.

Khon Chan Sithyka (Mo) (Dancer) began his training in Lakhaon Kaol (Cambodian classical male masked dance) in 2002, focusing on the role of the monkey, and completed his training in 2011.Throughout his studies he has performed extensively with the Sovanna Phum Khmer Association. Mo has performed in Stravinsky's Persephone directed by Peter Sellars at the Teatro Real in Madrid, Bach Cello Suite by Chumvan Sodhachivy (Belle) and Nam Narim in Taiwan, Thailand and Malaysia, Horizontal Life by Chun Yeun Soo in Phnom Penh, and Khmeropedies III: Source/Primate at the Guggenheim Museum as part of Season of Cambodia Festival in April 2013 and at the da:ns Festival in Singapore in October 2013.

Khon Chansina (Nan) (Dancer) began his training in Lakhaon Kaol (Cambodian classical male masked dance) in 2002, focusin on the role of the monkey, and completed his training in 2011. Throughout his studies he has performed extensively with the Sovanna Phum Khmer Association. He has participated in dance workshops with Arco Renz, Eko Supriyanto, and Cynthia Ling Lee. Nan has performed in Bach Cello Suite by Chumvan Sodhachiv (Belle) and Nam Narim in Taiwan, Thailand and Malasia, Horizontal Life by Chun Yeun Soo in Phnom Penh and Khmeropedies III:source/primate at the Guggenheim Museum as part of Season of Cambodia Festival in April 2013 and at the da:ns Festival in Singapore in October 2013.


The Contemporary Dance Platform is a new phase for Amrita Performin Arts in nurturing and furthering Cambodian artist's choreographic development. Following on the momentum of years of artistic collaborations with international choreographers and directors, Cambodian choreographers are tapping into their new found skills as well as their classical training in the creation of new works, as they continue to develop their own Cambodian contemporary dance vocabulary.

The Contemporary Dance Platform was founded in November 2013, and this is the fourth platform. Within every platform, choreographers have 6 weeks in exploring, experimenting and creating new works-in-progress. During the creative process, they work collaboratively in making costumes, lighting, props, set and music as well as production support. This process yields in artistic and technical capacity building in the arts.

Also a vital part of the Contemporary Dance Platform are discourses among the artists, with the audience and with dance experts. In this platform, we organize weekly sharing sessions where artists can show and discuss their progress, feedback workshops with invited experts, and conversations with the public. These discourses enrich knowledge and experience of the artists and the audience.

The platform has been so productive with support from Amrita's artistic leadership team led by our artistic director, Chey Chankethya. Their active and nurturing engagements through questions, advice, and participatory investigation within the process elevate the richness of choreographic development.

Contemporary Dance Platform is the integral element of Amrita's Artist Development program.


Welcome to our Contemporary Dance Platform and Happy Khmer New Year!

To celebrate Khmer New Year and to share with our audiences, once again, Amrita Performing Arts proudly presents our Contemporary Dance Platform with 3 works-in-progress by our very own choreographers: Chumvan Sodhachivy (Belle), Khon Chan Sithyka (Mo), and Yon Davy. Tonight, Amrita presents to you their creative works in front of your very eyes.

Under the theme of Life our choreographers have worked in different approaches in interpreting it. Within this last 6 weeks, I have witnessed their selfless commitment and hard work in making their new pieces. I tremendously get inspired by their commitment, bravery and imagination. Different from the previous dance platforms, this time the 3 emerging choreographers have demonstrated their willingness to push their boundary to the next level of their creation. Video projection, props, and text have been experimented and used to juxtapose with movement.

As the Artistic Director, this is the second platform that I am able to work closely with our dancers. I have seen them grow incredibly fast. The are interested in seeking answer of originality and uniqueness in creating work. To me, they allow themselves to dream bigger, think wiser, and go crazier. I love and appreciate their adventurous spirit.

Once again, thanks for coming out to encourage our artists and to support the experimentation and creativity of our humankind.

Enjoy and thank you!

Chey Chankethya

Amrita Performing Arts is an International NGO based in Phnom Penh, with US non-profit status. Amrita is committed to the creation of Cambodian contemporary dance and theater, responding to the creative drive of a young generation of artists who have taken on the task of ushering Cambodra's ancient perorming arts heritage into the future. Our work is developed through workshops based on intensive exchange and dialogue with international collaborators. All of our efforts emphasize capacity building as we assist in nurturing a new eneration of Cambodian choreographers, directors and practitioners in all areas of a arts management.

Executive Director Kang Rithisal
Artistic Director Chey Chankethya
Associate Director Hannah Stevens
Senior Artists Phon Sopheap, Nam Narim
General Manager Rachel Sené
Project Manager In Rachny
Production Coordinator Hourt Bunny
Project Officer Ros Sothmmea, Lim Chanboramy
Finance/Admin Coordinator Mech Koem Eang
Technical Coordinator Chen Borey
Asst Stage Manager Mem Siphaneth
Lighting Technician Keo Thy
Dang Chariya
Sound Technician Chea Sophon


We would like to thank the following individual and group for their contribution to making this platform possible: Proeung Chhieng, John and Sophiline Cheam Shapiro (Khmer Arts), Anders Jiras, Touch Salyniroth, Rithy Lomorpich (Phlerng Kop) and Dana Langlois.
Special thanks to Khmer Arts (Sophiline Arts Ensemble) for their in-kind contribution of lighting and sound equipment for this groduction. Also special thanks to Java Cafe and Gallery for box office support and hosting of A Conversation with Artists of Amrita Performing Arts.