Liu Feng-Shueh (1925--) By Ya-ping, Chen
Dr. Liu Feng-Shueh is a modern dance pioneer in Taiwan. She was the first person to conduct systematic experimentation with the formal elements and creative methods of modern dance in postwar Taiwan. Her research into historical Chinese dance since the 1950s has produced reconstructions of court and ceremonial dances from the Tang (618–907 CE), Sung (960–1279 CE) and Ming (1368–1644 CE) dynasties. This has enriched her interpretation of modern dance within the Chinese cultural context. As a choreographer, she has attended to the dialogue between tradition and modernity through upholding the value of individual freedom in creation while devoting herself to finding contemporary meanings for traditional dance forms and cultures. In a career that has spanned over six decades, Liu has studied the dance traditions of Taiwanese indigenous people and has choreographed modern dances inspired by them. These works raise important social and cultural issues faced by contemporary indigenous societies. In addition, she has been one of the most important leaders in Taiwan’s dance education with influence ranging from dance for children to professional training in higher education.