What Does Folded Paper Dance & Theatre Do?

Folded Paper Dance and Theatre focuses on how dance and theatre in its many forms—from ritual, classical, vernacular, social to the experimental—can act as a kinesthetically collaborative mode of experiencing, mapping, and transforming cultural heritage (and other) sites. These undertakings can energize and transform our relationships with each other. They can also impact our experiences of urban spaces and the natural world across a range of site-specific locales, build greater cultural understanding, and generate exploratory spaces for change.

Artistic Director

Kanta Kochhar-Lindgren

Kanta Kochhar-Lindgren, Ph.D., Director of Folded Paper Dance and Theatre Limited, focuses her collaborative undertakings on building cross-cultural networks and new forms of dance and theatre laboratories. Her written scholarship includes topics such as water and performance, translation and embodiment, disability and performance, and transnational avant-garde Asian performance. She is the author of two books and many articles and a former editor of Theatre Topics. Her recent awards include a Design Trust Grant (an Initiative of the Hong Kong Ambassadors of Design) (2016-2017) and a Fulbright-Nehru Senior Artist and Scholar Fellowship (2017-2018).

Choreography and Directing

Kanta Kochhar-Lindgren’s work links dance and theatre research, workshop development, and performance production. She has been the lead researcher, choreographer, and producer for Hong Kong Water Works  (Hong Kong, 2010); We Carry the Water (Kochi, Hong Kong, Minneapolis, 2014); Water Theatres  (Kochi, Hong Kong, Minneapolis, 2014); Pier Windows (Hong Kong, 2014); Water in Kerala: Art, Performance, and Science (Kochi/Kollam, India, 2015); Traveling Architectures (Hong Kong, 2017); Tracing Fort Kochi (Kochi, India, January 2018); Traveling Exchanges: Theatres, Architectures, and Heritage (Kochi, India, 2017-2018, ongoing); and Performing Urban Futures (2018-2020).

Upcoming performance projects include Tracing Luminosity (a multi-media performance installation on Kuttiyattam, Kalaripayattu, and Daveli); the Traveling Architectures Project (a set of interactive portable platforms that combine dance, storytelling, fashion, and new media with a special focus on engagements with disability communities); and Ink, Ocean, and Shakespeare: Tiny Theatres at Work (a set of chamber pieces that investigate Shakespeare in cross-cultural settings.)

Kochhar-Lindgren’s work blends artistic research, experimentation, storytelling, and a range of methods for linking spatial and mapping practices from design, architecture, and geography to new ways of making dance, theatre, and community performances.

Selected Arts Diplomacy Projects

A key part of Kochhar-Lindgren’s work focuses on building links between art, public diplomacy and global civic engagement. Kochhar-Lindgren's 2014 Pier Windows and 2010 Hong Kong WaterWorks received partial funding from the US Consulate of Hong Kong and Macau. In 2009, she served as a US State Department Cultural Envoy to Karachi, Pakistan, where she collaborated with Faisal Malik of Thespianz Theatre on an original theater production of Water Calligraphy. She also led outreach sessions to area schools and gave talks with NGOs, government officials, and media on the arts, cultural diplomacy, and diversity.

International Cross-Arts Training Includes: Kuttiyattam, Kochi, Thrissur, 2018; Kalaripayattu, Kochi, 2014, 2015, 2017; Silambattam, Thappattam DakShinaChitra, Chennai, August 2014, 2018; CVN Kalari, Calicut, Training in Kalaripayattu, February 2014; Greenix Village, Kochi India Training in Kalaripayyat and Kathakali, August, December 2013, March 2014; Research Creativity Lab, Haptic Interfaces, Wearables Lab, HKBU, Hong Kong, November 12- November 21, 2012; Dessau Bauhaus Foundation, Oskar Schlemmer, Dance and Architecture, June 18-23, 2012; Design Gymnastics at the Haptic Interface Design Institute, Berlin, July 16-20, 2012; Art School Lab on Cross Arts and Participatory Arts, Barbican, London, July 2-14, 2012; RIACE, Raghurajpur. India, Training in Odissi, September 23- October 28, 2011; and Reiss Performative Arti, Turin, Italy, September, 2010. 

Sample Workshops and Lecture-Workshops

Creativity Workshop: We will engage in a series of creativity and storytelling exercises that will build skills in performance and short documentary filmmaking—with a special focus on how take a performance and film project from idea to completion in a very short period of time. This workshop is designed for anyone interested in jumpstarting their creative practices.

Performing Architectures: This workshop investigates the relationships between practices of observation and creative acts of making space. Exercises cover ways of experiencing bodies, movement, materials, and different forms of (literal) architecture as new approaches to spatial composition and cultural storytelling. 

Dance and Theatre as Cultural Diplomacy: This lecture-workshop addresses a gap in a much-needed conversation about the emerging practices and pedagogies of performance as a form of cultural diplomacy in today’s artistic, educational, and increasingly diverse climate.

Other workshops can be customised upon request.