The history of Legend Lin Dance Theater is very much the story of its artistic director and choreographer Lee-Chen Lin. A graduate of the Chinese Culture University, Lin founded the repertory company for the purpose of presenting large-scale performance works that reflect the sp
irit and culture of her native Taiwan. Inspired by local religious rituals and ceremonial rites celebrating the rhythms of nature and our place in it, the artistry of the Legend Lin Dance Theatre blends a lush visual aesthetics with a brilliantly original choreography that gives new meaning to the phrase “poetry in motion.”
A show-stealer at the Festival d’Avignon in 1998, Miroirs de Vie was inspired by the Jiao, a Daoist open-air ceremony held during the Ghost Festival in the seventh lunar month, when the angry spirits of the un-cared-for dead are temporarily allowed to return to the world of the living. Having grown up in the harbor town of Keelung, where the Jiao has been practiced for centuries, Lin was a frequent witness to the power and beauty of this appeasement ceremony, and her Miriors de Vie is an aesthetic tribute to this local cultural tradition.
In its many appearances overseas, the company has won praise from critics and audiences alike. Its Hymne aux Fleurs qui Passent, which pays tribute to the cycle of the seasons and the complementary principles of Yin and Yang, garnered the Prix du Public at the 9th Biennale de la Danse de Lyon in 2000 and broke attendance records at the Festival de Otoño the following year. The work was subsequently performed in Italy, Germany, Austria, U.S. and Mexico, bringing Legend Lin Dance Theatre onto the world stage.
In 2009, invited by National Chiang Kai-Shek Cultural Center as Flagship production of the year, Legend Lin Dance Theatre presents the final work of the series, Song of Pensive Beholding after nine years. Inspired by watching the eagles at Keelung Harbor, Lee-Chen Lin’s hometown, the choreographer weaves her original tribal myth with a pensive eye, reflecting on the harm done to our environment and ourselves by human avarice. This long-awaited piece completes the trilogy of Lin’s tribute to Heaven, Earth, and Man, and serves as witness to the choreographer’s originality in transforming concern for the local culture into her own distinct dance vocabulary, which once again stuns the world stage. This production was invited to Hong Kong World Culture Festival, Maison de la Culture d’Amiens, Théâtre national de Chaillot, and Maison de la Danse de Lyon in 2011.