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Fugue meets break dance in Flying Bach

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Red Bull Flying Bach dancers took to San Francisco streets in April to preview their show at the Masonic this weekend. (Courtesy Red Bull)

Appearing in the Bay Area this week, Red Bull Flying Bach showcases the European break dance troupe The Flying Steps performing Bach’s “Well Tempered Clavier.” Created by choreographer Vartan Bassil and musical director Christoph Hagel, it features Swedish ballerina Anna Holmström and seven men, including Benny Kimoto. Benny, whose innovative moves were captured in PlaySation’s “B-Boy The Game,” chatted with the San Francisco Examiner via email.

What should audiences know about Flying Bach?

They should be prepared to see something completely new. We are not just dancing to classical music. We are visualizing every single fugue of the “Well-Tempered Clavier.”

What’s your role in the show?

Me and my crew are doing a full rehearsal at the studio in preparation for our big day. As a mysterious woman enters the scene, a love story between her and me develops, with a lot of up and downs. The two of us are not really compatible. See for yourself if we will manage!

How long have you been appearing in Flying Bach performances?

Since the premiere at the Neue Nationalgalerie in 2010 in Berlin. From that moment I nearly danced every show until 2014, when we started our new show Red Bull Flying Illusion. (I had a role as a dancer and also was responsible for the choreography.) But nowadays, the tour schedule of both shows allows me to dance Red Bull Flying Bach and Red Bull Flying Illusion.

Where are you from?

My father is from Japan, my mother is from Switzerland. I grew up in Switzerland, but since 1998, have been living in Berlin.

How and where did you learn to dance?

There was a youth club in Switzerland called Haus der Jugend. This is actually where everything began and where I met a lot of break dancers who did their training sessions. I just joined them.

What else about you and the show is important to mention?

For us, as the Flying Steps, it is an amazing highlight to perform in California. Breakdance was founded in the U.S. and everything I learned was from watching U.S. breakdancing. To perform Red Bull Flying Bach onstage in San Francisco is a dream come true.

Red Bull Flying Bach
Where: Masonic, 1111 California St., S.F.
When: 8 p.m. May 20-21, 4 and 7 p.m. May 22
Tickets: $25 to $76
Contact: www.livenation.com
Note: The show also is at 7:30 p.m. May 24 at Center for the Performing Arts, 255 Almaden Blvd., San Jose.

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