The Rite of Spring: Concert and Dance

The Rite of Spring Concert and Dance

  [Date] 24 – 25 June 2024 | 19.30
  [Admission] Free of charge
  [Venue] Small Hall at Thailand Cultural Centre


Monday 24th June, 2024: 240

Tuesday 25th June, 2024: 262

Total: 502

The Rite of Spring Concert and Dance, directed by Pichet Klunchun, is a collaborative performance featuring Japanese and a French pianists Tamayo Ikeda and Gwendal Giguelay alongside the Thai dance troupe “Pichet Klunchun Dance Company.” This project is co-organized by the Pichet Klunchun Dance Company, Ambassade de France en Thaïlande, the Japan Foundation, Bangkok, Office of Contemporary Art and Culture and Department of Cultural Promotion Ministry of Culture with support from Siam Music Yamaha, Mekhong, Koh-Kae and Baanlaesuan (Media Partner).   The event begins with a Thai Shadow Puppet and Khon, followed by Japanese and French piano pieces, and culminates in a joint choreography around The Rite of Spring. The dance is directed by Pichet Klunchun.

Khon, Thai masked dance theatre, is a traditional performing art that combines musical, vocal, literary, choreographic, ritual and crafted elements. Khon performance is always praised by its graceful dance movements, skilled vocal and instrumental presentations, and dazzlingly glittering costumes. Khon dance depicts scenes of Ramayanathe story of Rama“- the incarnation of Vishnu who brings order and justice to the world. Many episodes tell the story of Rama’s life including his journey through the forest, his monkey army, and his battles against the army of Thosakan, the demon king. In Thai traditional culture and history, Khon was strictly performed in the royal and princely courts by the master Thai classical dancers.

Takemitsu – Les Yeux Clos (1979 Eyes closed for piano solo)
Takemitsu, a self-taught composer born in 1930 in Tokyo, was discovered by Igor Stravinsky during his visit to Japan, who helped him gain worldwide recognition. During his visit to Chicago, Takemitsu encountered the painting ‘Les Yeux Clos’ by the French painter Odilon Redon, which inspired him to compose a piece of the same name. It evokes the union of the concepts of time and space, translated into Japanese by the word ‘MA’.

Claude Debussy’s Epigraphes antiques are six pieces for piano four hands composed between July 1914 and 1915. Debussy initially intended to use these epigraphes antiques as a suite for orchestra. The piano writing successively evokes the flute, the harp and the crotales (ancient cymbals). He plays with atonality, thus blurring the tonal feeling and sometimes evoking Stravinsky.

Claude Debussy – Le Triomphe de Bacchus (1882 for piano four-hands)
Debussy’s The Triumph of Bacchus was composed at the beginning of 1882 while he was still a student and is inspired by a French poem. The score is marked ‘orchestral suite’ although it only survives in a version for piano four hands by the composer.

Igor Stravinsky -The Rite of Spring
The Rite of Spring is a ballet composed by Igor Stravinsky that premiered in Paris in 1913. The work was conceived as a kind of sacred ceremony, presenting a community that sacrifices one of its own, a young woman, to glorify the divinity of Spring. The Rite is considered a major work of modernity in both dance and music.

The choreography of The Rite of Spring will be imagined and worked on by Pichet Klunchun Dance Company inspired by the story of Sita’s Trial by the Fire from Ramayana Epic.

Show Programme
Khon – Thai Dance
T. Takemitsu – Les Yeux Clos (1979 Eyes closed for piano solo)
C. Debussy – 6 Epigraphes Antiques (1914-1915 for piano four-hands)
 – Pour invoquer Pan, dieu du vent d’été “To invoke Pan, god of the summer wind »
 – Pour la danseuse aux crotales “For the dancer with Crotale
 – Pour remercier la pluie au matin “To thank the morning rain »
 – Pour que la nuit soit propice “In order that the night be propitious »
C. Debussy – Le Triomphe de Bacchus (1882 for piano four-hands)

– Intermission –

I. Stravinsky – The Rite of Spring  (1913 piano four-hands version )
    I. Adoration of the Earth
The Augurs of Spring: Dances of the Young Girls
Ritual of Abduction
Spring Rounds
Ritual of the Rival Tribes
Procession of the Sage
The Sage
Dance of the Earth
    II. The Sacrifice
Mystic Circles of the Young Girls
Glorification of the Chosen One
Evocation of the Ancestors
Ritual Action of the Ancestors
Sacrificial Dance (The Chosen One)

Tamayo Ikeda

Born in 1971 in Japan, Tamayo IKEDA began her musical studies at the age of three. She joined ‘Toho Gakuen’ in Tokyo before being admitted to the Paris Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in 1989. She obtained two First Prizes in piano and chamber music disciplines before joining the advanced cycle.

A scholarship holder of the A.P.E.F. and Société Générale, she received valuable advice from masters such as Dimitri Bashkirov, Halina Czerny-Stefanska, Léon Fleisher, and Maria Joao Pirès.

Her intuitive and passionate playing was rewarded with a Second Prize and the Special Claude Debussy Prize at the Yvonne Lefébure International Competition (no first prize awarded), a Special Prize (Claude Debussy) at the Porto International Competition, and the First Prize at the Francis Poulenc International Competition in 1999 (as well as the Special Casadessus Prize).

Tamayo IKEDA has performed in Europe, Norway, Finland, Japan, Indonesia, South Africa, and the United States in prestigious venues such as Hamarikyu Hall (Tokyo) or Carnegie Hall (New York). She regularly appears on the airwaves of France-Musique and particularly with the greatest soloists or conductors such as Gérard Poulet, Régis Pasquier, Roland Daugareil, Naoto Otomo, Dominique de Williencourt, etc.

Her discography includes a recording of works by Poulenc and Fauré. She also recorded a DVD dedicated to the works of Ravel and Stravinsky in piano four hands with the Duo YKEDA. With the latter, she recorded a Schubert disc (Warner Music) released in June 2009, and a Piano Dance disc (Harmonia Mundi) released in 2015, unanimously acclaimed by critics. Her disc dedicated to the works of Schubert-Liszt released at the end of 2022 was praised by international critics and selected among the best CDs of the year in Canada by the Textura review. She just recorded a Fauré Chopin disc on the 1905 Pleyel Piano with double escapement from the Balleron Collection restored by Sylvie Fouanon, which will be released in 2024.

She founded the Festiv’ des Musiques Festival of the Entre-Deux-Mers (Gironde) and in Yokohama (2006) in Japan, and takes care of the artistic direction for the Honganji Cercle Âme du Japon foundation (Kyoto). She taught at the École Normale de Musique in Paris (Cortot), and has been on the jury of several international competitions. Holder of the Certificate of Aptitude, she currently teaches at the Conservatories of the city of Paris.

 Gwendal Giguelay

Gwendal Giguelay is a pianist of Breton origin. Trained at the conservatoires of Paris, Lyon and Rennes, he won the Scaramuzza Prize at the Les Corts Competition in Barcelona (2008) as well as the Musiciens entre guerre et paix Prize at the Académie Ravel in Saint-Jean de Luz (2010). He performs as a soloist in France and abroad, and has recorded the 24 Études opus 10 and 25 by Chopin for the BY Classique label (2022).

Gwendal is a passionate chamber musician, and also forms a duo with cellist Louis Rodde with whom he recorded the CD Sonates (Fauré, Ropartz), released by the label NoMadMusic (2016).

A specialist in improvisation, he regularly accompanies silent films and also lends himself to original artistic experiences such as comic-book concerts, performances at the Venice Biennale, or even the cinema: you can also see him on screen in the film Noces by Philippe Béziat (2011).

Gwendal Giguelay has a privileged relationship with the world of dance. He has collaborated with many companies and institutions such as the Paris Opera Ballet, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater or the Centre National de la Danse in Pantin.

Gwendal Giguelay holds a Master Degree in pedagogy, and teaches piano and improvisation; he is regularly invited as a pedagogue in Asia and Africa. In 2016, he received the Prix de l’Enseignement Musical from the French Chambre Syndicale des Éditeurs de Musique.

His three pedagogical books have been published by First Editions: Improviser au piano pour les nuls (2017), Les Grands Classiques du piano pour les nuls (2018) and Les Chefs-d’œuvre du classique au cinéma pour les nuls (2020).

Dance Director:  Pichet Klunchun

Pichet Klunchun bridges traditional Thai Classical Dance language with contemporary sensibility, while keeping the heart and wisdom of the convention.  Pichet has earned domestic notoriety for his efforts in contemporising Khon. He has participated in intercultural performing arts programs as both dancer and choreographer in North America, Asia and Europe since 2002.

The awards Pichet achieved

  • 2008: ‘Routes’ ECF Princess Margriet Award for Cultural Diversity from European Cultural Foundation.  The award honors artists in the field of cultural diversity for helping to combat fear and disrespect of ‘the other’.
  • 2012: “Chevalier of the French Arts and Literature Order” from the French Ministry of Culture for his contribution to the influence of Culture in France, in Thailand and all over the world.
  • 2014: John D. Rockefeller 3rd Award by Asian Cultural Council (award for an individual from Asia or USA who has made a significant contribution to the international understanding, practice, or study of the visual or performing arts of Asia).

Co-organized by:

Supported by: