Gen­er­a­tion T

In­tro­duc­ing the game chang­ing young tal­ents on Thai­land Tatler’s 2018 Gen­er­a­tion T List. This month, a dance artist, creative di­rec­tor and chore­og­ra­pher look­ing to put Thai­land in step

Thailand Tatler - - CONTENTS -

In­tro­duc­ing the bright young tal­ent in our Gen­er­a­tion T 2018 list of go-get­ters un­der the age of 40 shap­ing the fu­ture of Thai­land. This month meet dancer, chore­og­ra­pher and creative di­rec­tor Navinda Pachim­sawat

Navinda Pachim­sawat, who be­came the first Thai to win the Ag­gre­gate Cup at the 11th Asia Pa­cific Dance Com­pe­ti­tion, has just led her dancers to win Best Troupe and Chore­og­ra­phy and first place at the Asia-Pa­cific Dance Com­pe­ti­tion un­der the Con­tem­po­rary Troupe Open Age cat­e­gory. Now she is fo­cus­ing on site-spe­cific per­for­mances and the es­tab­lish­ment of her own dance com­pany to help the next gen­er­a­tion to dis­cover the beauty of con­tem­po­rary dance.

Your per­spec­tive on dance.

It re­ally started to change af­ter I went to uni­ver­sity. I’ve al­ways done tech­ni­cal dances like jazz and bal­let but at uni­ver­sity in Aus­tralia I started to do more con­cep­tual things. It made me re­alise that dance can be used to change peo­ple’s per­spec­tive and make their lives bet­ter. That’s when I un­der­stood dance as an art form rather than a tech­ni­cal thing and be­gan to ap­pre­ci­ate its power to con­vey mes­sages to the au­di­ence.

You’ve tried to make a dif­fer­ence in the Thai dance scene.

I wanted to give dance a con­text, send­ing in­for­ma­tion through my work rather than just for the aes­thet­ics and mak­ing beau­ti­ful move­ments. I had high ex­pec­ta­tions but I found I couldn’t do what I had set out to do. I think be­cause the idea was very am­bi­tious and at the same time I was scared of fail­ing—so there was a pe­riod where I was go­ing through ups and downs.

That was when you ap­plied for the Dance Web Schol­ar­ship in Vi­enna.

It was the big­gest con­tem­po­rary dance fes­ti­val in the world. They only ac­cept 40 peo­ple from 2,000 ap­pli­cants and I was the youngest of the peo­ple ac­cepted. It gave me courage be­cause it made me think ‘ac­tu­ally, I can do this’. Be­fore I got the schol­ar­ship, I wanted to stop danc­ing be­cause I was pres­sur­ing my­self too much and I felt lost, some­how. When I ap­plied I didn’t write down what my forte was, I just wrote down what I was scared of and I think the hon­esty got through to them. It made me re­alise that if you are go­ing to cre­ate work and present it, hon­esty is one of the most im­por­tant el­e­ments.

Dance as a plat­form in Thai­land.

Af­ter the fes­ti­val I did some trav­el­ling around Europe, meet­ing peo­ple and try­ing to de­cide what I want to do with dance and my­self. Peo­ple like me who study dance abroad, they don’t usu­ally come back to Thai­land be­cause there’s no plat­form for it. But I was lucky be­cause my mother owns a dance school. The way I saw it I could stay abroad de­vel­op­ing my­self or come home and spread the mes­sage of dance to Thai young­sters, show­ing them that dance can pro­vide a vi­able oc­cu­pa­tion.

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