Sunday, 13. Januray 2012, 23:03 - 23:59, Ö1


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Video: Klaus Taschler

“YE SHANGHAI - A radio version” 

by Roberto Paci Dalò

Live aus dem ORF Funkhaus in Wien


Ye Shanghai is a music-visual performance by Roberto Paci Dalò created for SH Contemporary 2012 and produced by Davide Quadrio in collaboration with Francesca Girelli (Arthub Asia). The project deals with several aspects of the Shanghainese life before 1949. At the core of this work is the incredible story of the Shanghai Ghetto, formally known as the Restricted Sector for Stateless Refugees (mukokuseki nanmin gentei chiku). The Ghetto was an area of approximately one square mile located in the Hongkou District of Japanese-occupied Shanghai. It housed about 23,000 Jewish refugees relocated by the Japanese-issued Proclamation Concerning Restriction of Residence and Business of Stateless Refugees, after they fled from the German-occupied Europe before and during World War II. The work is also related to the Japanese occupation of the city. Although Japan and China had fought intermittently since 1931, the occupation of Shanghai started in 1937 when the city fell during the Battle of Songhu. The Japanese forces occupied the Chinese administered parts of Shanghai outside of the International Settlement and the French Concession. The International Settlement was occupied by the Japanese on 8 December 1941 and remained occupied until Japan’s surrender in 1945.
“From the middle of the 19th Century, Shanghai served as a focus of Jewish immigration to China. By the end of the 1930s, Sephardic Jews, Russian Jews and Jewish refugees from Nazi Europe in Shanghai amounted to over thirty thousand forming the largest community in the Far East. From 1903 to 1949, more then fifty Jewish newspapers and magazines came out in Shanghai in English, Russian, German, French, Chinese, Japanese, Polish, Hebrew and Yiddish. From 1939 to 1946 more then thirty German, Yiddish and Polish newspapers and magazines were published by Jewish refugees in Shanghai.” (Pan Guang)

A performance based on visual and audio materials from the years between 1933 and 1949. This database, composed of historical media, will be converted into a contemporary art work based on live video projections and music.
The iconic material used as a departure for this work is Nights of Shanghai – a song interpreted by Zhou Xuan (1918 - 1957). This hit from the 1940s will represent the aural and sonic environment of the piece. Being sampled, decomposed-recomposed, it will become a texture that will embrace the entire performance.
From the enlarged texture of this song, will gradually emerge components made out of live instrumental sounds (a small ensemble will play on the central staircase of the Shanghai Exhibition Center’s main hall), samples from archive materials (voices in English, Yiddish, Chinese, German), will recreate soundscapes from the past, along with electronics sounds.
The projected moving images will be entirely based on materials from the BFI British Film Institute's archives and consist in films shot in Shanghai by Western travellers during the 30s. The projections will be controlled in realtime during the performance.

The Ye Shanghai performance is a a co-production Arthub Asia, SH Contemporary, Giardini Pensili, NOTCH Festival, Messagerie. In association with BFI British Film Institute. In collaboration with iTOPIA Management Consulting Co. Ltd.
Giardini Pensili is supported by the Rimini Municipality, the Province of Rimini, the Region Emilia Romagna.