Dance of Darkness
April 4, 2003 2:24 PM   Subscribe

In retrospect I have seen a glimpse of it before, in Baraka (scroll down to images, in the middle of the second row). I had forgotten this. I had read about it before too and smugly thought I knew about it then. When I saw it live for the first time I realized I didn't know anything at all about it. And now that I've seen it, now that it feels like I know it, it still feels like I don't know anything about it.

Unfortunately there's only so much that can be said about anything. You have to experience it, and even then it has to touch you or resonate with you in some way before it really means anything to you. All I can say is that I saw something last weekend that touched me and resonated very strongly with me. And anything that I or anyone else could tell you about Butoh couldn't tell you what that was, much less give you what was given to me.
posted by wobh (10 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Iona is Hawaii's "pop" Butoh company.

I've seen some Butoh live and, wow, it is incredible. Nice set of links.
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:31 PM on April 4, 2003

So many pronouns.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 2:33 PM on April 4, 2003

i've watched it an insane amount of times. get a copy and don't loose it. it never stops being fascinating.
posted by dabitch at 2:43 PM on April 4, 2003

I've seen a bit o' butoh here in Seattle. I pitched an idea for a 'butoh cooking show' to the local PBS station, but they weren't interested.
posted by Ty Webb at 2:48 PM on April 4, 2003

The concept fascinates me to no end. But the Iona Pear Dancers here in Hawaii (the group Joey Michaels linked) make my teeth itch. I was quite glad to learn that butoh is much bigger and more diverse than what I'd seen here.
posted by pzarquon at 5:00 PM on April 4, 2003

it kind of sounded familiar and then i remembered i saw something like it in flirt! but then reading on, ... "In the performance a young man, Yoshito Ohno, has sex with a hen after which another man, Hijikata tries to have sexual relations with him. The chicken's neck was broken during the performance. There was no music." i realized, pink flamingos :D
posted by kliuless at 5:27 PM on April 4, 2003

Baraka is fantastic, but still I think it pales in comparison to Koyaanisqatsi

Even better is koyaanisqatsi with musical accompanyment with the Philip Glass Ensemble... now that was a night well spent
posted by badzen at 5:56 PM on April 4, 2003

I have a friend who once took a few Butoh classes. He said it was incredibly physically demanding. There is emphasis on complete muscular control and coordination. He said he would leave the class feeling like he had been pounded by a sledgehammer but ecstatic.
I live in Seattle too, where several years ago there was an unfortunate fatality during a Butoh performance. Even so, I am behind the Butoh cooking show 100%!!!
posted by evilcupcakes at 6:03 PM on April 4, 2003

I pitched an idea for a 'butoh cooking show'

Yikes! I'd never look at my condiments the same way again!

But ah, the imagination does wander...
posted by hama7 at 9:07 PM on April 4, 2003

I live in Seattle too, where several years ago there was an unfortunate fatality during a Butoh performance.

I saw him fall.
posted by y2karl at 10:31 PM on April 4, 2003

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