Butoh Season: International Performance and Conference

Butoh Season: International Butoh Conference and Performance was organized in collaboration with Soubi Sha and Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TAR UC), Faculty of Social Science, Arts
& Humanities.

Butoh Season featured conferences, workshops, showcases as well as talks to better help the understanding of the art as well as the influence it had on the Malaysian performing arts.

It was held from the 6th to the 8th of June, 10 am to 8 pm daily. The following week on the 13th and 14th of June was a performance by our co-organizer, Soubi Sha held at the Kuala Lumpur Performing
Arts Center at 8:30 pm both days called Reminiscence: The World of the Strange Tales Dance Performance.

What is Butoh? It is an avant-garde art movement started by Tatsumi Hijikata (1928 _ 1986) in Japan, which is known to be one of the most important movements in arts history. The more the conference dwelled into what Butoh is, the more difficult it became to define Butoh. The discussion sessions showed differing opinions between the original Hijikata Tatsumi disciple Mr. Waguri Yukio and Mr. Morishita Takahashi with the panelists and speakers from Thailand, Malaysia and Italy, in fact almost every speaker had a different view on Butoh was.

An enlightening point in the conference was when Mr. Lee Swee Keong of Nyoba Kan, known as the second Butoh group in Malaysia, shared on how Butoh had found its way to Malaysia.

The workshops by both Mr. Takao Kawaguchi and Mr. Taketeru Kudo on the 7th and 8th of June from 10 am _ 12pm were attended by about 20 observers and 20 participants including Butoh dancers as well as non-dancers.

The special showcase on the 7th of June featured Mr. Kudo who performed first, Nyob Kan who performed second with an excerpt from “Catan Kulit”and Mr. Kawaguchi who performed last with his
2008 piece, “Good Luck”.

We would like to express our heartfelt gratitude to TAR UC as well as Soubi Sha for making this event possible.

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