Ankoku Buto: The Premodern and Postmodern Influences on the by Susan Blakeley Klein

By Susan Blakeley Klein

A quick advent to the heritage, philosophy, and methods of the japanese avant-garde dance circulation, Ankoku Butô. Evoking pictures of gruesome attractiveness, revelling within the seamy underside of human habit, yetô dance teams resembling Sankai Juku and Dai Rakuda-kan have played to large severe and renowned acclaim, making yetô probably the most influential new forces within the dance global this present day. The monograph strains the improvement of yetô from its beginning within the bleak post-war panorama of 1950's Japan, after which addresses the query of yetô as a post-modern phenomenon, ahead of occurring to check the impression of conventional eastern functionality on yetô strategies. The final bankruptcy analyzes a selected dance (Niwa - The backyard) by means of Muteki-sha, to teach how those options are used concretely. contains translations of 4 essays on yetô by way of modern eastern dance critics.

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Additional info for Ankoku Buto: The Premodern and Postmodern Influences on the Dance of Utter Darkness

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One can see their desire to transfigure the body expressed not only in the use of white makeup, but in shaving their heads as weIl. No matter what form it takes, the fundamental attitude of Buto is the negation of the body itself through powerful metamorphosis. If we look at Buto in the context of the current attempt to transcend modernism, we can see that our modern institutions infiItrate every nook and cranny of people's bodies. Having been thoroughly violated by this institutionalizing process, people must turn on their own bodies a violent hatred in order to be able to stand on their feet again.

Regret for lost days reflected in the face--loss of power, weakness of muscle, loss of features and aIl human character. (Nakajima) Kannon. World of innocence, stillness--fluent energy of eternity. (Nakajima) Another dancer, Maezawa Yuriko, joined Nakajima in this program. As indicated in the program given above, in the first haif the two dancers alternated section by section. The white makeup, which in Buto acts to mask particular individuality, was here used to good effect: it allowed the two dancers to play one character, the single role of Nakajima as child, young girl, old woman, ghost, and Buddha.

66 However it is used, subtly or dramatically, this effect is one more element which helps to create the Buto vision of an unstable world in a state of constant flux, cyclically moving back and forth between the poles of disintegration and recreation. Another reason that Buto dancers powder themselves with white is that its use helps make the dancer more highly visible, allowing the stage to be darkened far more that would otherwise be possible. It seems to me that 64Havens, Artist and Patron in Postwar Japan, p.

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