A window on Japanese choreographic arts
OCTOBER 18. 19. 20 | 6:30PM
OCTOBER 21 | 4PM
Alphard is the brightest star in the Hydra constellation, and light is thus very important in this piece. The stage is divided into 9 squares defined by the lighting. Each square features different music that Mikiko Kawamura dances to as she travels from one square to another. She herself designed and composed all the elements of the piece and she describes the works as “stepping on perceptions.” Alphard is a solo acclaimed by critics as a delicate, powerful work superbly composed and performed.
"An incredible bundle of energy, all speed and fluidity and sudden breaks in rhythm, her body is a fantastic resonance chamber that vibrates to each musical universe, creating a stunning synthesis."
Un Fauteuil Pour l'Orchestre
Choreography and performance Mikiko Kawamura
Coproduction Dance Triennale Tokyo, Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse Number1
Mikiko Kawamura is a rising star of Japanese dance. In spite of her young age (she was born 1990), she has a number of significant awards to her credit, including the Outstanding New Artist Prize (New Choreographer Division) at the Yokohama Dance Collection EX2011 competition. A year later she won the New Artist Prize at the Dance ga Mitai! New Figure Dance Festival 10 and the 2012 Harajuku Performance + Dommune Award, as well as the Japan Dance Forum Award in 2013. She started out breakdancing, performing in the Shinjuku district of Tokyo. Her work on a show starts with a vision, a group of images, which she then consistently transforms into a stage piece. She works in a comprehensive manner, doing the music, lighting and visual design herself. Mikiko Kawamura combines multi-tasking and testing of ever new activities with accurate planning of her choreography. She describes her dance as an attempt to express parallel worlds – the constellations of never used alternatives that often go unnoticed. After winning the outstanding New Artist Prize at the Yokohama Dance Collection EX 2011, Alphard was presented the following year at the Yokohama Dance collection EX 2012, presented by Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse No.1 (Yokohama Arts Foundation). After the piece was shown in the Japan Focus program at the Dance Triennial Tokyo 2012, it was invited to the Malta Festival Poznan (curated by Romeo Castellucci) in Poznan, Poland, in 2013. It went on to the Perforacije Festival in Zagreb, Croatia and to Hanoi, Vietnam for the Europe Meets Asia in Contemporary Dance event in 2013. Her collaboration with other artists includes euphoria with Antti Seppanen, a Yokohama Dance Collection exchange program with the Jojo Oulu dance festival in Finland. Another work is It’s not us, it’s only glass, part of the Croatia-Japan Domino project with Alen and Nenad Sinkauz (musicians), Ivana Sajko (novelist), and Ivan Marušić-Klif (multimedia artist).
OCTOBER 18. 19. 20 | 7:30PM
OCTOBER 21 | 5PM
From a past forever gone, never to be regained, to the possibility of new encounters, Amigrecta is a reflection on life and death. This performance is the result of the sad observation that so many things are endangered and could disappear forever. The Japanese artist Kaori Seki, known for a style that includes slow exploration, scents and a unique form of primitive movement, created this piece in response to the Fukushima nuclear reactor meltdown and the radioactive contamination of the surrounding region. It makes for a strong choreography of opposites: those who see a past that can never be regained and those who perceive the possibility of new encounters.
The first proposal of the afternoon is also the most interesting by far. Hetero enthralls with its discrete, heartfelt minimalism.
Brigitte Manolo, DF Danse, about Hetero
Choreography Kaori Seki
Performance Teita Iwabuchi, Yu Goto, Yui Yabuki, Shun Shimizu, Kaori Seki
Lighting Masayoshi Takada
Perfume Design Toshifumi Yoshitake
Sound Director Yuji Tsutsumida
Technical Direction Chikage Yuyama
Costumes Yoko Takeuchi
Coproduction Saitama Arts Theater/Saitama Arts Foundation
Kaori Seki began studying classical ballet at the age of five. She started modern and contemporary dance at eighteen. At the same age, she started creating her own choreographic work. Since 2003 her work has been publicly shown and in 2013 Seki founded her company KAORI SEKI Co. PUNCTUMUN. In her creation process, she explores the physical senses of human beings, animals, and plants. She has created pieces evoking the sensory stimulus of the audience by using smells and fragrances. Seki was the winner of the French Embassy Prize for Young Choreographer at Yokohama Dance Collection EX in 2012 for Hetero, co-choreographed with Teita Iwabuchi, which came with a residency at the Centre national de danse contemporaine Angers (CNDC) in France. She also received the Next Generation Choreographer Award grand prix at the Toyota Choreography Award in 2012, the ELSUR FOUNDATION New Face Award in 2013, the Japan Dance Forum Award in 2016, and was a Junior Fellow of The Saison Foundation from 2014 to 2017. As a dancer, she has participated in works by Ko Murobushi. Seki’s recent works include Utu ri (2017), WO CO (2016) and Miroedetut (2014).
Namae ga Nai (SHOW)
Zan Yamashita & Kim Itoh
OCTOBER 25. 26. 27 | 7:30PM
OCTOBER 28 | 4PM
This piece is the encounter between Zan Yamashita, a choreographer renowned for his unique use of text, and Kim Itoh, a leading figure of Japanese contemporary dance. Influenced by the contemporary dance aesthetic from the 90s called “third generation of Butoh”, this work is inspired by people’s daily lives and delivers a strong political message. Known for his unique approach to text, Zan Yamashita directs Kim Itoh in a performance that exudes a strong physical presence.
The stage was full of people that were moving about as if hypnotized, children in adult bodies, smiling while fixating the kites’ dances. Zan’s presence was very distinct on the crowded stage (...) He easily slips, freely, he contorts himself in a series of closed movements, filled with emotions and expressivity… butoh.
Valentina Iancu, The Kite, about Namaeganai (There is no name)
Choreography Zan Yamashita
Performance Kim Itoh
Lighting and technical direction Lang Craighill
Sound Director Daisuke Hoshino
Creative Residency ST spot Yokohama
Born in Osaka in 1970, Zan Yamashita began his career as a choreographer and director in the mid-1990s. Representative works include Soko ni KaiteAru (It is written there), where the audience is given scripts as a guide to the performance, turning pages as signalled from the stage; Toumeiningen (Invisible man), where the movements of the dancers are put into words by a narrator; Seki o shitemo hitori (It’s just me coughing), where the dancers move in collaboration with images and words of haiku poems projected onstage; Funanoritachi (The Sailors), where the dancers perform on a moving raft-like platform; and Dobutsu no Engeki (Animal Theatre), a dance work that gives the impression of animals acting out a play. Yamashita is the winner of the 2004 Kyoto Art Centre Performing Arts Prize. His works have been performed overseas at the 2007 Live Arts Bangkok (Thailand), the 2008 Kunsten Festival des Arts (Belgium), the 2009 Istanbul International Contemporary Dance and Performance Festival (Turkey), the 2010 TBA Festival (Portland, Oregon) and most recently in Japan at the 2010 Postmainstream Performing Arts Festival (Tokyo). As an actor, he has performed in Kikoeru, Anata? (2005) directed by Shogo Ota, and in Ikishima (2010), directed by Yukichi Matsumoto. Recently he has done collaborative works with foreign artists, including Thai dancer Pichet Klunchun and Malaysian director Fahmi Fadzil. Yamashita’s performance workshops are also well received.
FILM & VIDEO retrospective
SABURO TESHIGAWARA / KARAS
OCTOBER 25. 27 | 6PM
- A Tale Of (2005) – 8 min.
A mysterious film that makes one wonder what’s real or unreal, visible or invisible…
- Keshioko (1993) – 10 min.
Directing/editing: Saburo Teshigawara. Camera: Nobuyoshi Araki. Cast: Saburo Teshigawara, Kei Miyata, and others.
- Friction of Time – Perspective Study vol.2 (2008) – 20 min.
Originating from Teshigawara’s 2004 videodance piece Perspective Study vol.1, this new work is the result of a process of trial-and-error with cutting-edge video technology.
OCTOBER 26. 28 | 6 PM
- Perspective Study vol.1 (2004) – 20 min.
An experimental and aesthetic film that explores the interaction between the dancer’s movement and that of the camera.
- T-City (1993) – 28 min.
In his first film, Teshigawara applies his fundamental idea about dance, which is that bodies, materials, and sounds merge together and form a new matter.
You don't look for coherence in the works of Japanese choreographer Saburo Teshigawara, you go to experience them.
Sanjoy Roy, The Guardian
A Tale Of
Direction, edit Saburo Teshigawara and Ravi Deepres
Performers Kei Miyata, Rihoko Sato
Funded by Arts Council of England
Friction of Time – Perspective Study vol.2
Direction, edit Saburo Teshigawara
Cast Saburo Teshigawara, Rihoko Sato
Production Yamaguchi Center for Arts and Media [YCAM] / KARAS
Direction, edit Saburo Teshigawara
Camera Nobuyoshi Araki
Cast Saburo Teshigawara, Kei Miyata, others
Perspective Study vol.1
Direction, edit Saburo Teshigawara.
Performed by Rihoko Sato, Junaid Jemal Sendi
Production Kei Miyata, Kanagawa Arts Foundation
Thanks to BankART1929, Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative
Direction, camera, edit Saburo Teshigawara
Cast Sayoko Yamaguchi, Kei Miyata, others
Production Aichi Arts Center, Aichi Prefectural Arts Promotion Service
Saburo Teshigawara began his artistic career in 1981 in Tokyo after studying visual arts and classical ballet. In 1985 he established Karas with Kei Miyata, and they created choreography together as well as pursuing their own activities. Since then, he and Karas have been invited every year to perform in major cities around the world. In addition to solo performances and his work with Karas, Teshigawara has also established an international reputation as a choreographer and director. He has been commissioned to create dance works for many international ballet companies such as the Paris Opera. Teshigawara has also received international attention in the visual arts for his art exhibits, films and videos, and also for designing the sets, lighting and costumes for all his performances. Teshigawara’s keenly honed sculptural sensibilities and powerful sense of composition, his command of space and his decisive dance movements all fuse to create a unique world that is his alone. Keen interests in music and space have led him to create site-specific works, and to collaborate with various musicians. In addition to ongoing workshops at the Karas studio in Tokyo, Saburo Teshigawara is also involved in many educational projects. Recent young members of Karas are involved in the Dance of Air project. This educational, year-long workshop culminates in a performance produced by the New National Theatre in Tokyo. In a similar vein, S.T.E.P. (Saburo Teshigawara Education Project) has been in operation since 1995 and was established with partners in the UK. In 2004 the choreographer was selected as dance mentor by the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, working for one year with a chosen protégé. He has been a professor since 2014 at Tama Art University, teaching in the department of Set Design, Drama and Dance. From 2006 to 2013, he taught at the College of Contemporary Psychology, St. Paul’s (Rikkyo) University in Japan. Through these various projects, Saburo Teshigawara continues to encourage and inspire young dancers.