Bridge Dance Festival
April 6 – May 6, 2018
4/6, 4/7 – 7:00pm
‘Enmei (“Long Life”): A Dance and Aging’ Project brings together dancers and designers from the United States and Japan to explore what it means and what it takes to age as a woman in the field of contemporary dance. Artists Kei Takei and Masako Kitaura join forces with Mary Fitzgerald, Eileen Standley and Rose Weitz to create an evening of solo and collaborative works that examine how our respective cultures value and represent women dancers as they age. Using the dancing body as a site of exploration, Enmei investigates our unique cultural histories by collapsing the past and present, the personal and universal, the tangible and immaterial. In a series of three distinct sections that are both richly layered and stripped down, these works are a testament to the accumulated wisdom of the aging body, and a celebration of the human spirit.
‘Enmei’ features an original musical score created by Kotoka Suzuki. Guest performer Laz Brezer, Associate Director of Moving Earth, also will be joining the cast for these performances.
4/25 – 7:00pm
Following Yumiko’s acclaimed solo “Before the Dawn”, this is the second part of her trilogy “From 1 to 100”. 100 Light Years of Solitude is inspired by Garcia Marquez’s “One Hundred Years of Solitude” to explore a state of solitude Yumiko dances the life of a unique creature, born on a planet 100 light years away from ours. Imagining that this creature is the only one of its species on that planet, it enjoys unfolding its life until it realizes its destiny… to exist in solitude. Yumiko says, “In my childhood, I was always fascinated by the imaginary creatures and monsters of fairy tales. Butoh, a dance of metamorphosis, helps me to explore this imaginary world, and make something invisible visible.”
Direction/Choreography /Dance – Yumiko Yoshioka, Co-direction – Miguel Camarero, Costume – Pablo Alarcon, Light design/ technical direction – Spiros Paterakis, Music composition – Tomas Tello/ Zam Johnson.
4/27, 4/28 – 3:00pm
A word from CLUTCH creator, Darrell Jones:
“For the past ten years, my artistic research has found its central focus through a conversation between my postmodern training and the voguing aesthetic. My goal in this work…go beyond mere replication and unravel the physical poetics. Can this specific gay minority art form and my refracted materials be a metaphor for global ideas of oppression, transgression and transformation? As I have continued my research into the aesthetic I continue to work with various demographics with particular questions into how the physical languages and improvisational approaches can influence and be influenced across cultures. In this research in how to battle mechanisms of oppression through the physical form, it felt right to change the turf, go long and far, train and create in a place seasoned in its cycles of oppression, resistance and liberation. Sharing these processes out of an American context developed ways in which to see the movements in a new frame. This seemed like good scientific method –test it out in multiple places, with multiple people, see what lives, see what dies. In a residency period in Japan my counterpart in this project, used the analogy of planting seeds. She plants the idea seeds and through her creative process notices the inherent features, qualities and patterns of growth given the elements of sustenance. This project was a rare opportunity to observe the effect of novel soil in unfamiliarizing my artistic materials. A fresh country on our very American dance.”
4/27, 4/28 – 7:00pm
A contemporary choreographer based in Japan, Kaori Seki explores the possibilities of the live encounter, engaging the audience’s senses and evoking nostalgia and memories that are difficult to record. Previous dances have incorporated stimuli such as fragrances or fabric in order to awaken the minds and bodies of the audience. Like her company name “PUNCTUMUN”— a portmanteau that describes “a small, distinct point”— Seki, who is trained in classical ballet and modern dance forms such as Butoh, creates work that is meticulous, sensuous, and subtle.
5/4, 5/5, 5/6 – 7:00pm
Beyond the Box II ~ Yu(遊), takes another step and explores the roles of women from the confines of traditional Japanese classical dance where female characters are predominantly limited to subtle, contained, and subdued expressions. Up against this notion of submission, Yu boldly and creatively deviates from the accepted norm in traditional Japanese performance practices, the performers facilitate the meta-perceptual opportunity to embody the full range of emotional and physical expression, strength, and power, and subconsciously accepted standards for gender identity. Yoshinojo Fujima, Hokkaido calligraphy artist Natsuki Kubo, and the Reduction Ensemble, led by renown artist/creative musician Tatsu Aoki present: “Yu (遊)” as the concluding event of the Bridge Dance Festival. The performance also commemorates the first collaboration of the Chicago-Obihiro Artist Exchange.