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Empty fragment: Butoh Dance Theater comes to San Miguel

By Cati Demme

Based on the classic Haiku by Matsuo Bashö, “Death Poem”:

“Taken ill this journey,

My dreams continue to stroll

Amid withered moors.”…

Empty Fragment is a feast for the senses, combining movement, light, color, texture, smell, and sound. Jaime Razzo, from DF, a master Mexican Butoh performer, accompanied by Yukari Hirisawa on the traditional 17 string Koto, will be performing six shows here in San Miguel at the Fábrica La Aurora in the alternative space “El Portón Negro.”

Theater: Butoh dance Theater, Empty Fragment. Thu, Feb 2, 7 & 8pm. 50 pesos, 30 pesos under 13 and over 65. Fri, Feb 3, 6, 7, 8 & 9pm, 70 pesos, 50 pesos under 13 and over 65. El Portón Negro, Fábrica La Aurora (across Dee Ropers Studio/Gallery)

The Origins of Butoh:

Butoh Dance Theater was originated by Tatsume Hijigati and Kazuo Ono, in 1959, as a reaction to the cultural changes brought on by the horrors of WWII. Japan could never be the same, and Hijikati and Ono created a new form of expression that was contemporary, yet uniquely Japanese. Hijikati was particularly inspired by the German expressionists and the Surrealists, in particular Antoine Artaud and his Theater of Cruelty, which were theatrical experiences meant to shock the audience into confronting the base elements of life. In the 1970s Hijikati became drawn to the mysteries revealed by the female body and began to work exclusive with a select group of female dancers. Kazuo Ono took on another perspective and began investigating the emotions and irony provoked by the vicissitudes of human life. He is often described as the light that contrasts the darkness of Hijikati’s ”Ankoko Butoh.” Ono returned to the stage at 71 and continued to perform until his death at 101 years of age. He trained and inspired hundreds of Butoh performers during his long and illustrious career..

About Jaime Razzo, Butoh Performer:

In 2004, Razzo, founded his own Butoh Company in DF, cero618  ( He is a multi-talented and highly trained dancer, actor, and theater technician. He studied extensively in Japan and has performed around the world. He has collaborated with a variety of artists in different disciplines including with sculptor Javier Marin, (Those are Razzo’s expressive hands and feet!), with director Robert Wilson as a dancer,, with Lila Downs, also as a dancer, and with the Soloist Ensemble of Bellas Artes, DF as choreographer and set designer. One of his specialties is working in “Alternative Spaces.” He is currently involved in the production of “La Traviata” here in San Miguel as lighting designer. In addition to the performance of “Empty Fragment” Razzo will be presenting two workshops as an introduction to the philosophy and training for Butoh performance. These workshops, the first on Feb 14,15, and 16, and the second Feb 21, 22 and 23 will be held in the evenings 7 to 10pm, No previous experience is necessary to participate. The cost is 750 pesos, early registration, and 900 pesos after Feb. (A student discount is offered to students 16 to 25 of 600 pesos, with proof of enrollment .) In addition, two

scholarships will be available to this age group. For more information, or to reserve space, contact Cati Demme at / Subject; Butoh Workshop. There is limited space so register early! (15 participants per workshop) Please note: this workshop is the Pre-requisite for Advanced workshops by Razzo to be scheduled this spring.

About Yakuri Hirisawa, Koto Player:

Yukari began studying the Koto extensively in 1988. She also performs on the three string Shamsen, the Gu Zheng, a plucked zither and the “pslater    salterio?” a zither from the mid evil Europe. . She studied extensively in the traditional Japanese Schools of Yamada and Ikuta. In 2002-2003 she participated in the theater piece “Kai On, Sounds of the Sea” by Akiko Lida and Teresa Ulloa, with the Mexican performing group of prehispanic instruments, “Tribu.” In addition, she partook in the theater piece “Orion, the great man of the heavens” by Alice Rahon, directed by Alicia Martínez. She collaborated with the group “Segrel” in the program ”Music, Poetry and Dance: Revolutionizing Change” performing on the Mexican “salterio” or zither. During the performance of “Empty Fragment” Hirisawa will be performing on the 17- String traditional Koto instrument.

This cultural presentation is made possible by the generous sponsorship of Agave Real Estate; Barushi Restaurant; Estilo Art and Culture Magazine; Generator Gallery and Manos de Salud. For advance sales contact Cati Demme at /Subject: Butoh Tickets. Limited seating.

Tickets go on sale, Monday Jan 23 at: Agave Real Estate, Calle Aldama 16, Centro and at Barushi Restaurant, Fábrica La Aurora.


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