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KAKILANG FESTIVAL 2023 Announces Lineup

The festival runs 21 February – 23 April 2023.

KAKILANG FESTIVAL 2023 Announces Lineup

Kakilang (formerly Chinese Arts Now CAN) has announced the Full Programme and dates for its unique multi-artform festival which celebrates the work of artists from across the wide spectrum of East and Southeast Asian heritages. Eight extraordinary events platforming theatre, dance, visual arts, live music, cabaret and puppetry will be staged from the 21 February - 23 April 2023 in a selection of London's leading arts venues including the Barbican, Omnibus Theatre, Rich Mix, Shoreditch Town Hall, Two Temple Place and The Yard.

Opening the festival in spectacular fashion at the Barbican in February 2023 is Kakilang's HOME X, an innovative new show designed to thrill audiences in an ambitious live performance meets virtual world. Created to push the boundaries of theatre beyond our current imaginations. HOME X fuses cutting edge technology with theatre, music, gaming and VR technology. Exploring themes of roots and belonging, destruction and renewal, audiences will hear moving real-life testimonies of home and migration. Created with artists performing in real-time in London and Hong Kong, a

visually stunning virtual land inhabited by magical creatures will be seen by the live audience via an impressive 270-degree projection presenting a mythological and yet futuristic experience all at the same time.

Kakilang's eclectic festival programme, spread across 8 weeks, also includes: STATE-LESS, a major co-production with Two Temple Place of an eclectic visual arts exhibition bringing together for the first time the work of 10 internationally acclaimed East and Southeast Asian artists using mediums including film, digital and photography to explore the tangible borders and invisible boundaries that define their identities; TASTE is a radical celebration of Queer Southeast and East Asian artistry, a queer cabaret night hosted by Princess Xixi featuring everything from drag to dance; EVERY DOLLAR IS A SOLDIER/WITH MONEY YOU'RE A DRAGON by Daniel York Loh, a part gig-theatre, part spoken word rap and part concert lament on the immigrant experience, particularly the harsh travails of the impoverished first Chinese settlers in London, will have its live PREMIERE, seen in the setting it was originally intended for. Accompanied by a mix of electronic music composed by An-Ting 安婷 and featuring world-leading Chinese classical instrumentation artists Cheng Yu on the pipa and Wang Xiao on the erhu; LIGHT VESSEL, the continuation of an avant-garde durational art performance by contemporary circus artists Hazel Lam and Lucia Palladino explores the 'power in gentleness'; Acclaimed theatremaker and performer Tobi Poster Su presents THE LONESOME DEATH OF ENG BUNKER, a new gothic horror tale of the final hours of Eng (of Chang and Eng fame) utilising puppetry, music and striptease. Legend of the contemporary dance scene Jo Fong, with clown and circus director George Orange, present their hit physical theatre show THE REST OF OUR LIVES, a cabaret of life and near death featuring dance, circus and games. Closing the festival on a high note, acclaimed singer/songwriter Emmy The Great returns with her first major gig in two years, She will be performing an exciting EP of new material exploring her Hong Kong past and her British present commissioned by Kakilang as well as a set of old favourites.

Kakilang's Artistic Director An-Ting Chang says: "I started Kakilang Festival with the intention of offering unique perspectives from a variety of artists to help bridge the gap in the understanding of Southeast and East Asian cultures here. But through listening to all of their different and fascinating attitudes and philosophies, I myself have learnt a lot about the place I originally called home. For this Kakilang Festival, we gather "our kakilang" from many different places and with different disciplines and artforms and invite audiences to question the reality of state boundaries, racial stereotypes and other failures of the imagination that still exist in peoples' minds. "We are all migrant's of the Earth", as a HOME X interviewee rightly said."

Associate Artistic Director Daniel York Loh adds: "Kakilang: means our people. Our place. Our aching for Home. These yearnings resound through our entire Festival programme this year - the first since our rebranding and restructuring. Putting this Festival together has been a humbling and profound experience for everyone involved and I hope it resonates as much for our audiences, our Kakilang. I have a feeling it will."

Kakilang is immensely gratified that the Bagri Foundation is supporting this year's festival, which welcomes artists from a wide spectrum of the Southeast and East Asian diaspora including China, Taiwan, Vietnam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia and the UK.

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