Dance of Darkness : Shirow Kaze-Dama

NITE Art July 23 from 8pm

Butoh dance evolved in the intellectual and artistic ferment of post-war Japan as a ‘direct assault on the refinement (miyabi) and understatement (shibui) so valued in Japanese aesthetics’ (Sanders, Vicki (Autumn 1988). “Dancing and the Dark Soul of Japan: An Aesthetic Analysis of “Butō””. Asian Theatre Journal 5 (2): 149. Retrieved 7 March 2014.) In its adherence to free expression and the exploration of the void, it eschews rules of form and encourages the expression of spiritual transformation through movement of the human body. Often described as seditious and controversial, it came to the West in the 1980’s and non-Japanese groups continue to evolve.

Melbourne-based Shirow Kaze-Dama is a performer in the tradition of one of the two founders of Butoh, Hijikata Tatsumi (1928-1986). In accordance with the independent spirit of early butoh, Shirow has established his own style and school KYO MU KAN 虚無館 Pure Void (more about Kyo Mu Kan here).

In the spirit of the cultural osmosis characterizing the second half of the year at LKG, Shirow will complement Daniel Truscott’s journey through Ghostly Japan with a butoh performance entitled ‘Hannya’. Hannya, well known in Noh theatre, is a female demon, made so through malicious jealousy. Demonic and intimidating, the Hannya also expresses torment and sorrow.

Photography by Studio MonsoonLKG_JapaneseArt_Butoh_Shirow kaze-dama2LKG_JapaneseArt_Butoh_Shirow kaze-dama3 LKG_JapaneseArt_Butoh_Shirow kaze-dama4 LKG_JapaneseArt_Butoh_Shirow kaze-dama5