Unappeased is a stunning new interdisciplinary work that examines the traditions, rituals and beliefs around death and the departed in South East Asia. In a complex layering of movement, sound, visuals and vocalizations, it enlists the transformative power of shamanistic enactment in a performance to shake the soul.
Following research into Taoist Shamanistic Ritual in Malaysia between 2012-2013, and especially inspired by a month-long observation of Penang’s famous Hungry Ghost Festival, WeiZen Ho and Alan Schacher initiated an interdisciplinary performative interpretation of their experiences.
The above video represents documentation from stage 1 showings of a work-in- progress, 14 & 15 November 2014, Penang, Malaysia.
Presenting company: Gravity Research Institute Inc. Australia
Alan Schacher & WeiZen Ho (Australia): Performers and Project Co-Creators
Aida Redza (Malaysia): Performer/Co-Devisor
Victoria Hunt (Australia): Performer/Co-Devisor
Robbie Avenaim (Australia): Musician, percussive robotic sound installations
Pongpassakorn Kulthirathum (Thailand): Video Artist
Tan Sooi Beng: Cultural Advisor, Ombak-Ombak Artists’ Collective, Penang
Venue: penangpac (Performing Arts Centre of Penang), Malaysia.
This stage of the project would not have been possible without our Malaysian Project Partners: penangpac & Ombak-Ombak .
We thank Melaka Arts and Performance Festival and E-Plus Entertainment for their support and advice.
This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.
Camera: Phin Oswald
Video Edit: Doa Karan
The smoky, ethereal ghost-realms of the departed, and ambiguities between superstition and devotion, are tensions that hold the harmony between wellbeing, fortunes, and life itself. From this angle, the project addresses contemporary malaise, insatiable cravings, obsessions and addictions.