Choy Ka Fai

Postcolonial Spirits

Indonesian, Dutch, with English subtitles

Duration 75 min

As part of his ongoing project “CosmicWander”, Berlin­based Singaporean artist Choy Ka Fai offers a new perspective on the Indonesian folk dance – Dolalak. Originating from the island of Java, Dolalak has continuously adapted to pop culture and evolved with social media. It stems from traditional Javanese dance mixed with imitations of colonial Dutch soldiers at cosplay parties in the 1930s. The trance ritual is accompanied by songs of local myths, political banter and Islamic poems.

Inspired by the multi­dimensional heritage of Dolalak, “Postcolonial Spirits” presents a telepresence experience with the performers from Java, who are connected via livestream and the performer Vincent Riebeek, who is present live in Berlin. In perceiving established cultural and historical rituals through the lens of contemporary technology, Choy opens up a liminal space in which dance transcends colonial resistance, power and fantasy.


“Aside from the performance “Postcolonial Spirits”, Tanz im August will present the exhibition, “CosmicWander: Expedition” at KINDL – Zentrum für zeitgenössische Kunst from 6 – 22 August.

World Premiere
  • Cast

    Concept, Documentary, Narration, Direction

    Choy Ka Fai

    Supernatural presence

    Raden Mas Sosro


    Tang Fukuen

    Choreography & Performance

    Vincent Riebeek, Andri Kurniawan

    Assistant director

    Darlane Litaay

    Music & Sound Composer

    Yennu Ariendra

    Live Music Performer

    J. Mo'ong Santosa Pribadi


    Nova Ruth, Andri Kurniawan

    3D Visual design & Technology

    Brandon Tay

    Visual artist

    Sven Gareis / telematique

    Light design, Installation, Technical direction

    Ray Tseng

    Set design

    Dan Lancea

    Props design

    Soy Division

    Costume (Berlin)

    Justyna Gmitrzuk

    Costume tailoring (Indonesia)


    Heritage consultation

    Dolalak Budi Santoso Group

    Research Assistant

    Sanne van Aalderen

    Project manager

    Mara Nedelcu

    Production manager, Research & Translation (Indonesia)

    Sekar Handayani

    Creative producer (Indonesia)

    Jala Adolphus


    Franziska Hauser

  • Credits

    Production: Choy Ka Fai in cooperation with Tanz im August / HAU Hebbel am Ufer Berlin. Supported by: The Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe, Fonds Darstellende Künste with funds from the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media. The research process is supported by: The National Arts Council, Singapore, the VERTIGO project as part of the STARTS program of the European Commission, based on technological elements from Moving Digits.


Due to an extensive PCR testing regime for SARS-CoV-2, the performers can move on stage in this production without minimum distance.

Past dates

World Premiere

Thu 12.8.

from 18:00 to 19:15HAU1

Fri 13.8.

from 18:00 to 19:15HAU1

Sat 14.8.

from 17:00 to 18:15HAU1

Sun 15.8.

from 17:00 to 18:15HAU1


Stresemannstr. 29, 10963 Berlin

There are two marked parking spots in front of the building. Access to the Parkett by means of a separate entrance with lift when necessary. Barrier-free restroom facilities are available. Advance notification advised.