Japanese Butoh troupe Sankai Juku comes to BAM October 28—31 with Umusuna: Memories Before History. Context is everything, so get even closer to the production with this curated selection of articles and videos related to the show. After you've attended the show, let us know what you thought below and by posting on social media using #SankaiJuku.
Umusuna: Memories Before History (PDF)
Survey: Umusuna: Memories Before History
The Japan Foundation is interested in hearing what you thought of Sankai Juku's performance, which is supported in part by their PAJ (Performing Arts Japan) program. Thank you in advance for your time to answer their questions.
Sankai Juku: Cosmic Dance (BAM Blog)
Butoh dancers are “bodies that have maintained the crisis of primal experience.”
A Conversation with Ushio Amagatsu (Wochikochi.jp)
The Sankai Juku founder discusses the elemental nature of Umusuna, the function of white paint in Butoh, and more.
Butoh: Dance of Darkness (New York Times)
“[Butoh replaced] the conventional Japanese social mask of reticence and understatement with one of anguish and even terror.”
Watch & Listen
Excerpts from Tobari (YouTube)
Watch Sankai Juku in these clips from their 2008 film.
“The individual is an existence that has a beginning and an end. Although the individual itself is discontinuous, outside your body there is a continuity that flows like a river. In other words, it is discontinuity enveloped in continuity. So, we have both elements within us, and I hope to express the idea of eternity as a core theme of my entire work.”—Sankai Juku founder Ushio Amagatsu
Now your turn...
What did you think? How would you describe Sankai Juku’s peculiar mixture of beauty and the grotesque? Tell us what's on your mind in the comments below and on social media using #SankaiJuku.