[100+] Lim Pei Ern

Tell me about yourself.

My name is Lim Pei Ern, I was born and raised from Sabah, BORNEO pursued and graduated with Bachelor (BA) in Dance in Singapore. I danced for international and national companies before working independently as a dancer, choreographer, and collaborator with different art disciplinarians. In 2020, I moved and migrated over to Kyoto, Japan. I consider myself as a free spirited person who is fascinated in dancing out debatable answers to the many questions of life.

What has inspired you to dance?

My mother has been a role model to me in many aspects of my life. She is a natural-born mover. She moves to any rhythm of music and beats around her. I guess that genetic-trait is with me since then. I became such an active kid that my parents decided to enroll me into ballet class and rhythmic gymnastic sport at the age of 4. Since then, my journey as a dancer begun and has never stopped being part of my life until today.

Explain your most recent work.

As a contemporary dance artist, I love working with different art disciplinarian as a means to exposed and indulge myself to another world of creation, also to challenge my artistic process. There are two current works that happened at the most recent time and each has is very own story and experiences. One of the works is Hachimonjiya’s Living Soul. A collaboration with a writer/photographer Sébastien Raizer. It was when I visited Sébastien’s exhibition at Hachimonjiya, I immediately said: “I have a deep feeling with this place, I wanna dance here.” Kai Fusayoshi (awarded winner Kyotographie/well-known Japanese photographer in the world) agreed to lend his 40-year-old Izakaya for shooting. And the Story goes on:

What was the story about?

A female dancer impersonating the Hachimonjiya’s Living Souls. Living tools connected to dead tools, neurotic panic algorithmic mimic in, the black iron asylum of, NOW HERE : Humans are soul-linked and dance many languages in an ever floating world, all of them futures generators, free and unlimited, equally bright and dark, saving and dangerous – art being the impossible momentum of their equinoxes. I felt this was the silent bet that Pei ern made when I discovered Hachimonjiya: “I SHALL DANCE HERE!” I myself was a link between various territories of languages and life. Even Sébastien said, “I tried to catch her talks and tales and illuminations the best way I understood them.”

What is your aim during the creation process?

Being Present and Presence. Giving 200% present gives me the 100% of being presence in my very own current state of energy level. With this energy level, only then I am able to focus and be committed to produce a work that’s authentic, real and as raw as possible which brings room to audiences for self-interpretation and perception.

What fascinated you about Art?

Art has no right or wrong answer to it. That’s what fascinated me. I need not study, memorize and pass an exam for it. Art is what you interpret, imagine, sees, or even inventing a story to it.

What is your Masterpiece?

It’s called Nyanyian Bumi. It pays homage to Mother Earth where human and nature co-exists on the same earth. This performance aims to lend a voice inspired by Sureq Galigo (an mythological poetic text of the Bugis from South Sulawesi) to Mother Earth although cultural elements and artistic expression unique to each of the artists were incorporated. I collaborated with artists and dancers from three different countries (Makassar, Indonesia, Japan and four other Malaysia) on the same stage, with the objective of finding the common cultural framework among the diversity.

What is the relationship between ‘Nyanyian Bumi’ and your interpretation of Nature?

I wish to walk bare-footed. I wish to play, hop and jump on the ground, soil without feeling the dancer of it. Unfortunately, Mother Nature has been destroyed by Human civilizations. Her cry of Earthquake, Floods, Hurricanes, Tsunami are no longer a safe place for a living soul. New technologies are created to advance improve the safety of people, but none has realized it only brings more harm to the future generation. In Nyanyian Bumi, I used dead leafs and branches as source of music and sound to the piece. Real leafs are brought into the theatre as the prop for the dancers.

How are you as an Artist in this pandemic?

I’m constantly moving just in different pace. Paces are slower for me ever since I migrated to a new foreign world, where I have to re-start everything from scratch. Be it my resume, profile, personality, career, past experiences… these are no longer valid in a new country. Nobody cares about One’s background. Fact. However, in the state of Covid-19 when everything slows down for everyone including myself, I see this as an opportunity for me to recharge and be rejuvenate again. I walk, or cycle to parks, or along the river bank to find a spot to meditate, day-dream and just letting my mind goes free. There are days I feel unproductive, but later on these practices brought me into another unseen world. The unexplainable unseen world.

What would you say as an Artist when looking back your past life?

I shall pat myself and say, “well done”. Whatever failures I have, was my victory to who I am today.

What’s your next plan?

I will continue doing my own exercises that is essential for my worn-out muscles and strength, dancing to any space I see (car parks, road side, playgrounds, kitchen, and everywhere I feel like) just to stay sane and connected with the living things and non-living things around me. Also constantly checking my email and website www.pei3rn.com just in case any of you who is reading this now is interested for a fun-together collaboration in future.

Interviewer : chef editor. Heejin Kim

Lim Pei Ern

completed Advanced II in RAD Ballet, represented Malaysia Sports Game SUKMA2006 and graduated as First Class Honor in Bachelor’s Dance Singapore. Participated in various festivals and international collaborations.

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