May 2015 archive

Being in Japan near Ohno Kazuo

We are honoured to host in June an Israeli multidisciplinary artist, painter, Butoh dancer and choreographer Maya Dunsky, who visits Berlin for the first time.

Maya paved her way in the Butoh world since 1985 as a student of the master Ohno Kazuo, the founder of Butoh. She lived, studied and created in Japan for 6 years. Below you find the text Maya Dunsky has kindly shared with us, describing her artistic path, strongly influenced by the master Ohno Kazuo.

Being in Japan near Ohno Kazuo

In 1983 my mother offered me to see the overwhelming performance of the Butoh dance company Sankai Juku as well as the primordial Butoh performance of the Ariadone women’s group.
I was enchanted by the sense and the perception of space as fundamental essence, which envelops the dancer’s total presence. It proved how dance does not depend on form and exists also in stillness. These Butoh performances that I was exposed to through my mother, made it clear to me that there is a different dance; an internal, authentic dance, connected to life, that does not derive from form and is not enslaved to form.


Extracts from the artist talk with Aya Irizuki (Japan)

At the end of March, before leaving for Japan, in Mime Centrum Berlin Aya Irizuki gave a talk about Butoh and her experiences. We are glad to share the most interesting pieces of this talk.

Aya Irizuki, born in 1983 in Japan, studied classical and modern ballet from her childhood, but turned to Butoh at the age of 18. She visited Asbestos Hall and took classes with Akiko Motofuji, later – with Yukio Waguri and Koichi Tamano. She also worked as a dancer in their dance companies performing in Japan and over the world until 2007.
After her graduation from Tokyo University of Fine Arts and Music, she played the main female role of a Butoh dancer in the film “Kirschblüten– HANAMI” (Cherry Blossoms), dir. Doris Dörrie, 2008. Later Aya studied Corporeal Mime in London. She has been performing her solo works all over the world.

FROM BALLET TO BUTOH – Artist talk with Aya Irizuki

Butoh experiences of Aya Irizuki

with Akiko Motofuji
My first class with Akiko… it was only me and her.. and she asked me to stand up within 5 minutes. I thought “Hm, what shall I do? In ballet it’s very quick – just in seconds.. but 5 minutes? So I kept myself aksing: Shall I move my knee now? Oh no, better I move my hip… First I push with my legs… And what about hands?” – At the end I couldn’t stand up, but my mind was about to explode because of all of these questions.. and that was of a great impact for me.