I watched Ko Murobushi’s solo performance at Kagurazaka’s die Pratze.
The guest seating was filled with people, and it had become floor seating. Still, it was for good reason as I was able to watch in person.
It was an incredible dance that admirably destroyed the idea that Butoh = bogus (it may have been so in the past but not now).
From the beginning, with the pillar as the starting point, he fell facing upward, the back of his head landing on the floor! His grip on the audience was splendid, and the stance of cutting through “arts” with entertainment was very cool. Especially in the first half, when he does not move his body much, as if a huge, another life form was wriggling inside a bag of skin, some parts were made tense and stiff, and other parts put at plain ease; no matter how you looked at it, both of these extremities were put together in a strange way and it was astounding. Together with his breathing, the man continually let out a strange yet hard-to-describe voice, and at a comparatively early stage, unexpectedly, he spoke!
Whether it was a conversation with the audience or something else, while toying with a kind of unknown relationship, within this desperate performance that expressed a developing, intense bitterness, I felt the difficulty in the grasping of the body, along with the essence of art form nowadays that has deviated from the common meaning of the word “dance,” sink deep into my heart.
“What” in the world is Murobushi doing, “what” in the world are we watching and “what” are we being touched by? I thought the fact that we were never to know was made thoroughly clear. In any case, from beginning to end, essential scenes were done in succession. Rather than a number of essential scenes being programmed in, it felt like meeting the various (critical) dimensions, Murobushi’s body and the audience’s perception, one after another with time. In this way, each and every one carried a sense of incidence, and seeing that was most certainly a form of “witnessing.” If time allowed I would have come running again the next day as well, but I had to let this time pass. I eagerly await next year’s performance.

Vinci Ting
November 22, 2000
Posting from Keisuke Sakurai's blog

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