Visiting Artist | March 2019
Darkness Odyssey: Part 3, Non-Opera/Becoming
Japanese artist, Kota Yamazaki, returns to MANCC to develop the final piece in his Darkness Odyssey trilogy, which combines “eastern” and “western” philosophies, from modernist French thinkers, Deleuze and Guattari, to butoh pioneer, Tatsumi Hijikata. Combining these seemingly disparate lineages, Yamazaki imagines the body as a black hole, with the ability to absorb everything it encounters.
Yamazaki first came to MANCC in November 2017 to develop Part 2: I or Hallucination from the same trilogy. Part 2 laid the groundwork for Part 3 by considering the porousness of bodies (fragile and vaporous) and the ability to reflect our ever-changing inner landscapes while exploring our interconnected universe. Part 2 went on to premiere to critical acclaim at Baryshnikov Art Center in New York City the following month, and was nominated for the 2018 “Bessie” Award for Outstanding Production.
Part 3, Non-Opera/Becoming will feature a team of international dancers with diverse backgrounds including Japanese dancer, Taketeru Kudo, one of the few remaining butoh performers to have trained directly with Hijikata, and an African dancer Alain Sinandja Tongo from Togo.
Inspired by these performers, who organically carry the forms of dance they perform, Yamazaki aims to blur the distinction between these dance forms by boiling them down to their most fundamental essence. The work will also include two New York City-based contemporary dancers, who will be asked to explore these non-Western dance forms with the intent of reaching similar levels of authenticity in their bodies, beyond mimicking the external forms. In attempting to do so, Yamazaki hopes to address how each dancer deals with self-identity as a performer. He asks, “how can a performer shift his/her identity by internalizing something foreign?”
This residency is supported, in part, by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation