A Music Picnic and Creative Links Co-Production in association with Point View Art
Please note: The digital on-demand performance will remain available until February 21, 2022. Access the performance by logging in to your account.
In this haunting song cycle, composer and performer Njo Kong Kie 楊光奇 sets the poetry of Xu Lizhi 許立志 to song and delivers a lamentation for our digital age. Xu toiled in a factory in Shenzhen, China, where he, along with hundreds of thousands of others who were unseen and ignored, manufactured the digital devices we use every day. Xu’s spare and profound poetry is an indictment of labour exploitation, and it also offers a glimpse into his interior life: his hopes, his dreams, and his struggle under the unbearable weight of existence.
Kong Kie’s score for solo voice and piano is performed in Mandarin, with English surtitles that are integrated into a rich tapestry of video imagery. The result is a contemplative landscape—and a powerful insistence on Xu’s humanity. This is a work about human dignity and economic injustice, each set against the other in a conflict as familiar as it is tragic. In the synthesis of the two artists, we have a vital human document, an act of political witness, and, not least, a performance of great beauty. There will be a post-show artist chat after the February 5th performance, moderated by Derek Chan, Managing Artistic Director of Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre.
“… I can’t help but push more people to see this show so they can open their eyes to these problems in the world, told in such a beautiful manner. Whether or not you know the tragic story of Xu Lizhi, please go see this touching ode to his art.” —Mooney on Theatre
Njo Kong Kie takes a walk through the streets of Toronto, and invites you to share his journey in a place of your own choosing. The musical accompaniment is drawn from the artist’s own Picnic in the Cemetery,and it’s a delight for the ears. Interspersed with the melodic interludes are Kong Kie’s musings on ideology, interpersonal connections, Kung-Fu flicks, ambition, and more, including the true cost of our smartphones.
Text by Njo Kong Kie except the poem 一颗螺丝掉在地上 “A single screw fell to the ground” by Xu Lizhi, translated into English by Derek Kwan
Music by Njo Kong Kie, performed by Simon Claude, Alexandre Castonguay and Njo Kong Kie
Track details: Moments Cinématiques no 1, Quatrième Confession, Ljubljana, Moments Cinématiques no 11, Sweet, Toujours
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NJO KONG KIE
Composer / Director / Performer / Co-Producer
Njo Kong Kie has composed music for various types of theatre, including opera, dance, and plays, as well as for screen soundtracks; he was also the long-serving musical director of La La La Human Steps. Kong Kie’s credits include the scores for the operas Mr. Shi and His Lover, knotty together, and La Señorita Mundo; the concert theatre work Picnic in the Cemetery; the play Infinity; and the web series Off Kilter, as well as various dance productions, including a piece for Ballet BC. The I swallowed a moon made of iron website is moon.musicpicnic.com.
1412 Cartwright Street, Granville Island, Vancouver
- February 4: 8:00
- February 5: 8:00
- February 6: 2:00
Runtime: 65 mins
Streamed performance available starting February 6 at 6:00PM until February 14 at 11:59PM. (The streaming period has been extended by one week due to a technical issue that delayed the initial availability.)
Single Tickets: $34
Performance in Mandarin with English translations projected
Accessible to low vision patrons who understand Mandarin / Introduction available below
Braille prints of the poems are available at the venue / Introduction available below
Poems will be projected in English / Introduction available below
There will be a Relaxed Performance on February 6th at 2pm
The artist has also written an introduction for Deaf or hard of hearing patrons to help decide whether or not this show is right for them.
View or download the visual story here.
The visual story will have information and pictures to help people prepare for the experience or decide if this show is right for them.
On the day of the relaxed performance, Feb 6th, there will be an introduction to give people an opportunity to see some of the intense moments beforehand. If you want to attend that, please arrive by 1.30pm and let us know you would like to attend the introduction to the relaxed performance.
I Swallowed a Moon Made of Iron
Created by Njo Kong Kie set to the poetry of 許立志 Xu Lizhi, a A Music Picnic and Creative Links Co-Production in association with Point View Art
POET 許立志 XU LIZHI COMPOSER / DIRECTOR / PERFORMER / CO-PRODUCER 楊光奇 NJO KONG KIE TRANSLATOR 關顯揚 DEREK KWAN SPACE AND LIGHTING DESIGNER / FILM CAPTURE DIRECTOR 馮國基 FUNG KWOK KEE GABRIEL TOUR LIGHTING DIRECTOR 李維明 JARETH LI PHOTOGRAPHER / FILMMAKER 歐陽永鋒 AO IEONG WENG FONG VIDEO DESIGNER ( TEXT) 余志力 NICHOLAS YEE SOUND DESIGNER RYAN MCNABB VOCAL COACH STACIE DUNLOP MOVEMENT COACH 楊漢源 WILLIAM YONG PRODUCTION MANAGER 周芷会 ECHO ZHOU STAGE MANAGER 蔣家寧 KAREN CHIANG TECHNICAL DIRECTOR (TOUR AND FILM CAPTURE) SEBASTIAN MARZIALI TECHNICAL DIRECTOR / PRODUCTION MANAGER / FILM CAPTURE VIDEO EFFECTS DIRECTOR / CO-PRODUCER 鄺華歡 ERIK KUONG WA FUN
With the support of the Canada Council for the Arts and Fundo de Desenvolvimento da Cultura do Governo da RAE de Macau