The Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur proudly presents an authentic contemporary dance performance – “HIBIKI – Resonance from Far Away” by Sankai Juku.

Sankai Juku, one of the most well-known Butoh companies, was founded in 1975 by artistic director, Ushio AMAGATSU. He has premiered a new piece at a constant pace, approximately once every two years, at Théâtre de la Ville, Paris, where he now creates and works.

HIBIKI, one of the internationally acclaimed pieces of Sankai Juku, is an award-winning work of unparalleled simplicity and poetic beauty. It world-premiered at Théâtre de la Ville, Paris in December 1998 and has been highly acclaimed in many countries throughout the world. In May 2001, it was performed at Sadler’s Wells Theatre in London, one of the leading theatres for contemporary dance in the U.K.. The following year, HIBIKI won the 26th Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Dance Production, the most prestigious performing arts award in the U.K.

This highly-acclaimed Butoh company has performed in 40 countries and visited more than 700 cities around the world. Malaysians will get to see this fascinating performance by Sankai Juku for the very first time, and it is a golden opportunity not to be missed!

Date & Time:
25 November 2006 (Sat), 8:30pm
26 November 2006 (Sun), 3.00pm

Pentas 1, Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre (KLPac)
Jalan Strachan, off Jalan Ipoh, KL

Ticket Prices:
RM52, RM32, RM22 (Students, Senior Citizens, Disabled & JFKL members)

available at
KLPac box office 03-4047 9000

The Actors Studio Bangsar box office 03-2094 9400

For more details, please visit:-
Sankai Juku:
or contact The Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur at 03-2161 2104 or email to

Butoh Workshop by SEMIMARU (member of Sankai Juku)
Date: 27 November 2006 (Mon)
Time: 7pm-10pm
Venue: Studio Tari Utama, 6th Floor at ASWARA (formerly knownly as ASK)
Admission: FREE
Capacity: 35 (First-come-first-served-basis), observers are allowed to enter
Qualification: Dancers or choreographers, including students
Registration: Please send email to or contact JFKL at 03-2161 2104


Sankai Juku was founded in 1975 by artistic director, Ushio AMAGATSU. He has premiered a new piece at a constant pace, approximately once every two years, at Théâtre de la Ville, Paris. Since 1982, Théâtre de la Ville, Paris has commissioned 11 productions: Jomon Sho (1982), Netsu no Katachi (1984), Unetsu (1986), Shijima (1988), Omote(1991), Yuragi (1993), Hiyomeki (1995), Hibiki (1998), Kagemi (2000), Utsuri (2003) and Toki (2005).

In 1980, Sankai Juku was invited to perform in Europe for the first time. They went to the Nancy International Festival in France with the firm conviction that Butoh would be accepted. The performance made quite a sensation – they won great popularity there and the Avignon Festival officially invited them in the same year. For the next four years, the company remained in Europe and performed in various international festivals; Edinburgh International Festival, Spain Madrid International festival, International Cervantino Festival, etc. In 1984, they were invited to North America where they made their North America debut at the Toronto International Festival and the L.A. Olympic Arts Festival, and then toured extensively in North America and Canada. Since 1990, Sankai Juku has also performed in Asian countries such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea and Indonesia. They also made a success of their Russian and East European tour in 1998.

As of 1st April 2006, Sankai Juku has performed in 40 countries* and visited more than 700 cities. In February 2002, “HIBIKI” received the 26th Laurence Olivier Awards in the category of Best New Dance Production.

Ushio AMAGATSU, founder and artistic director, trained in classical as well as modern dance before he worked out his own Butoh. For AMAGATSU, Butoh expresses the language of the body. In the 1970s, AMAGATSU drew mostly on his own individual experience for inspiration. During the 1980s, much of which he presents is an abstract vision of the infinite, evolutionary movement, the relationship of gravity to the earth and the environment.

* 40 countries: France, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, Mexico, Spain, Austria, Venezuela, Poland, Germany, United Kingdom, Yugoslavia, Holland, Israel, Finland, Sweden, Canada, the United States, Greece, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Singapore, Denmark, Portugal, Hong Kong, Korea, Taiwan, Norway, Indonesia, Colombia, Russia, Hungary, Czech, Ukraine, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Croatia, Iceland and Japan.

HIBIKI – Resonance from Far Away

HIBIKI is one of internationally acclaimed pieces of Sankai Juku, and award winning work of unparalleled simplicity and poetic beauty. It was world-premiered at Théâtre de la Ville, Paris in December 1998 and has received high reputation from many countries in the world. It was performed at Sadler’s Wells Theatre in London, which is known as one of main theatres leads contemporary dance in U.K. in May 2001. The following year, HIBIKI won the 26th Laurence Olivier Award in category of Best New Dance Production, the most prestigious prize of performing arts in U.K.

Performed in a dream landscape with whirling costumes, the company of six dancers blends images, sound and performance to create a truly hypnotic dance experience. The first sound heard in the theatre is that of liquid dripping rhythmically from suspended glass urns into 13 concave glass lenses. Lying on the sand, dancers uncurl effortlessly from fetal positions under caramel lighting, and weave elemental movements into a delicate show motion dance. Metamorphosing like statues of granite brought to life, dancers pulse through sand and shadow, splashed by glistening ice which suddenly changes into carmine blood. The dynamic interplay of large and small gestures, accompanied by a lyrical and electronic score by Takashi KAKO and Yoichiro YOSHIKAWA, brings you chemical reaction of arts in the beautiful garden with sands and small water pools – cracking the kernel of the particular to liberate the universal.


He was born in Yokosuka City, Japan in 1949, a founder of Butoh company Sankai Juku in 1975. He created Amagatsu Sho (1977), Kinkan Shonen (1978) and Sholiba (1979) before the first world tour in 1980. Since 1981, France and Théâtre de la Ville, Paris have become his places for creation and work, and in this year he created Bakki for Festival d’Avignon. At Théâtre de la Ville, Paris, he has created successively Jomon Sho (1982), Netsu no Katachi (1984), Unetsu (1986),Shijima (1988), Omote (1991), Yuragi (1993), Hiyomeki (1995), Hibiki (1998), Kagemi (2000), Utsuri (2003) and Toki(2005).

In 1988 he created Fushi on the invitation of Jacob’s Pillow Foundation in the U.S., music by Philip Glass. In 1989, he was appointed to the artistic director of the Spiral Hall in Tokyo where he directed Apocalypse (1989) and Fifth-V (1990) for the American dancers. In 1992, he presided the Jury of the International Meeting of Dance of Bagnolet, and this year he was awarded the “Chevalier de l’Ordre de l’Art et des Letters” by French Cultural Ministry.

In February 1997, he directed Bluebeard’s Castle of Bartok, conducted by Peter EOTVOS at Tokyo International Forum. In March 1998, at OPERA NATIONAL DE LYON, France, he directed Peter EOTVOS’s opera Three Sisters (world premiere), which received “Prix du Syndicat National de la Critique, France”. Three Sisters has been seen in the 2001-2002 season at THEATRE DE CHATELET in Paris, at THEATRE ROYAL DE LA MONNAIE in Brussels, at OPERA NATIONAL DE LYON and at WIENER FESTWOCHEN 2002 in Austria. In February 2002, Hibiki won the 26th Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Dance Production.

In March 2004, Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology awarded Geijutu Sensho Prize (Art Encouragement Prize) to Amagatsu for his outstanding artistic achievement. In 2005, he received many requests from the world; he re-created Kinkan Shonen, outstanding work in early-period, presented at Théâtre de la Ville, Paris and Setagaya Public Theatre, Tokyo. He also created new piece Toki, which was world-premiered at Théâtre de la Ville, Paris in December 2005.

“I like to think that dance begins in the process that precedes birth and even earlier, in the repetition of an evolution that took hundreds of millions of years. You can’t sit up, stand up or move without involving gravity, without entering into an exchange with it. This is even truer for dance, which becomes a dialogue with gravity.”

Reviews of SANKAI JUKU

“The singular glory of Sankai Juku is that it achieves almost pure metaphor.”
– Jay Cocks, Time

“One of the most original and startling dance theatre groups to be seen…”
– Anna Kisselgoff, The New York Times

“An experience as close to stepping into an artist’s dramas any you’ll ever have”.
– Margaret Putnam, Markrell, The Guardian

“[Ushio Amagatsu] conveys the infinitely minute yet spellbinding transformations of a world in constant metamorphosis.”
– Dance Magazine

Reviews of HIBIKI

“A luminous rite – slow, enigmatic, beautiful”!
– The Village Voice (U.S.A)

“Image after glorious image unfolds in a beautiful environment … it’s as symbolic as you want to make it, and it’s as simple as can be”.
– The Montreal Gazette (U.S.A)

“Hibiki” is surprisingly direct in many respects. Earth and water, universal elements, are symbolized by pool in 13 large transparent saucers on a sand-covered stage. Lenslike, these dishes gather some of the drops of water that drip slowly from suspended glass vessels. The hourglass regularity of the dripping suggests a metaphor for eternity: liquid sands of time”.
– The New York Times (U.S.A)

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