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“The Unforbidden Garden”: Lan Tung, Lee Su-feh & Paul Plimley
Thursday May 1, 2014 at 7:30pm
Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Chinese Classical Garden, Vancouver
578 Carrall Street Vancouver
Tickets: $15 regular, $10 for garden members & students
For more information, visit
purchase tickets at 604-662-3207 or at the door

Lan Tung – erhu (Chinese violin) & voice
Lee Su-feh – dance
Paul Plimley – guitar

In the “unforbidden” garden, Lan Tung, Lee Su-feh & Paul Plimley get together to explore the audio and physical space through music and dance. These three improvisers have brought with them many years of experiences and very distinctive trainings: Chinese and contemporary music, Asian and contemporary dance, and jazz and avant-garde music. Lan Tung weaves her recitative vocal style with the soaring erhu, blending the two sounds into one. Lee Su-feh punctuates the space with her proactive movements. The genius pianist Paul Plimley leaves his 88 black and white keys at home and shares with us his new passion for the guitar. The audience is invited to witness their dialogue with each other and with the beautiful surroundings of the Sun Yat-Sen Garden. This concert is a preview of the Sound of Dragon Music Festival on May 9-11 at the Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre. Visit for more info about the festival.

Lan Tung uses traditional music as a bridge to connect between Asian and western ears, while experimenting with contradictions by taking culturally specific materials outside their context. Crossing between Vancouver’s new music, improvised music and world music scenes, erhu (Chinese violin) performer and composer Lan Tung has produced numerous projects, collaborating with composers, musicians, dancers, media artists, and animators from different cultures. Her rhythmic intricacy has a direct influence from Indian music, while her passionate melodies come from Flamenco and Central Asian music, and the sense of breath/space from Chinese music. Incorporating improvisation and graphic notations, Lan’s compositions are released on numerous CDs, winning nominations by the JUNOs, Independent Music Awards, Canadian Independent Music Awards, and Western Canadian Music Awards. Lan is the artistic director of Sound of Dragon Society, Orchid Ensemble, and Proliferasian, and a member of the Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra. Originally from Taiwan, she has studied Chinese music at Taipei’s Chinese Cultural Centre, graphic score with Barry Guy, improvisation with Mary Oliver, Hindustani music with Kala Ramnath, and Uyghur music with Abdukerim Osman. Lan has appeared as an erhu soloist with Orchestre Metropolitain (Montreal), Symphony Nova Scotia (Halifax), Atlas Ensemble (Amsterdam & Helsinki), and Little Giant Chinese Chamber Orchestra (Taipei).

Lee Su-Feh is Artistic Director of battery opera. How this happened involved: Childrens’ Theatre with Janet Pillai, traditional Malay and contemporary dance with Marion D’Cruz in Malaysia, contemporary dance with Lari Leong in Paris, contact improvisation with Peter Bingham in Vancouver; and many years of Chinese martial arts with infuriatingly exacting teachers. Before coming to Vancouver in 1988, she lived in Paris, London, Indonesia and Malaysia.  She speaks six languages badly. In 1998, she won the Prix de Jeune Auteur of the Rencontres Choregraphiques Internationales de Seine-St. Denis for her workGecko Eats Fly. In theatre, Su-Feh has worked as a choreographer with directors such as Marc Diamond, Donna Spencer and most recently DD Kugler and Steven Hill. She has been nominated twice for a Jessie Award. In 2012, her solo work The Whole Beast won the BOH Cameronian Award for Outstanding Choreography in Malaysia. In 2013, she was awarded the Isadora Duncan Award by the Dance Centre in Vancouver, in recognition of her contribution to the dance milieu through her work as choreographer, dancer, teacher, dramaturge and all-around shit disturber. In 1995, she co-founded battery opera with David McIntosh with whom she has been collaborating ever since she saw him lying, bleeding, in Kota Baru in 1985.

Since the mid 1970’s Paul Plimley has been actively developing his music out of the continuum of American and European music traditions. He has played and toured with many great improvisers in jazz and new music from around the globe. Plimley has released over 30 CDs, LPs and TV music documentaries, which have been well received by many who show a passion for music beyond disco. His hundreds of compositions cover all media: orchestra, jazz bands, solo piano/marimba/guitar excursions, CD ROM, electronic music, music for modern dance, and movie soundtracks. He has developed his music to a high degree performing on piano, guitar, and the marimba/ vibraphone.

As well as being a ping pong enthusiast and Finnegans Wake scholar, Paul has been known to groove in sunny warm weather in a variety of intriguing disguises. He takes comedy very seriously and has difficulty spelling the word trajedy. And he is always ready to remind us that music generates heat. “The present day composer refuses to die!” Hotcha!!