Download Dancing Into Darkness: Butoh, Zen, and Japan by Sondra Horton Fraleigh PDF

By Sondra Horton Fraleigh

Dancing Into Darkness is Sondra Horton Fraleigh's chronological diary of her deepening figuring out of and appreciation for this paintings shape, as she strikes from a place of aesthetic reaction as an viewers member to that of assimilation as a pupil. As a scholar of Zen and butoh, Fraleigh witnesses her personal creative and private transformation via essays, poems, interviews, and reflections spanning twelve years of analysis, a lot of it in Japan. a variety of functionality pictures and unique calligraphy by means of Fraleigh's Zen instructor Shodo Akane remove darkness from her words.

The items of Dancing Into Darkness move barriers, simply as butoh anticipates a transforming into international amalgamation. "Butoh isn't a classy stream grafted onto Western dance, " Fraleigh concludes, "and Western dance should be extra japanese than now we have been in a position to see. "

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Extra resources for Dancing Into Darkness: Butoh, Zen, and Japan

Sample text

Then, when familiar territory is given up, the traveler can stand in a new familiar, in the place where worlds (and they are whole worlds) meet. Late November 1994 My interests often elicit good-natured comments from the Japanese on how it takes a foreigner (who comes to Japan) to "teach the Japanese" about Zen and Butoh. When outsiders take an interest in another culture, especially if they adopt aspects that ring (in some way) true to their own character, natives may see themselves in a new light.

Move very quickly and in a complicated manner," was one of her more abstract instructions. At the Wigman School, we worked on instructions spontaneously, then showed them to the class in various states on their way from improvisation to choreography. They were expressively directed, more outwardly demonstrated or extroverted than in Ohno's classes. With Ohno one tuned an inner eye to the movement and oneself, aided by the soft music ofJapanese harp or flute in the background. ) The effect could be hypnotic, relaxing, disturbing, and restorative.

Even so, Ohno teaches that to know the universe, we cannot tum away from ugliness and the messy refuse of life. Ohno and Hijikata both grew up poor, as the conscience and dark poiesis of their dancing reflects. " Hijikata died at midlife, while Ohno, in his nineties, is the oldest living Butoh soloist and still performs his poetic choreography internationally. Butoh has sought (and is still unraveling) what is most essen~ tially Japanese. I hope to show, however, that the deeper search of Butoh is for what it means to be human.

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