ACQUA Wie die Steine
MUT - solo performance
Theater Delphi, Berlin September 2019 &
Ackerstadt Palast, Berlin April 2017
6. April 2017, von Charlotte Riggert
Photo by Hiroshi Makino
In dem Tanzsolo “MUT” setzt sich die Motimaru Dance Company mit Fragen der Subjekt-Welt-Beziehung auseinander.
Wir betreten das kleine Studio des Acker Stadt Palastes in völliger Dunkelheit. In Dreiergrüppchen werden wir von einem Mitarbeiter mittels einer kleinen Taschenlampe zu unseren Sitzplätzen gelotst. Die Dunkelheit bringt maximale Aufmerksamkeit mit sich und gebannt erwarte ich die Wiedererlangung des Sehenkönnens. Die Stille, die mit der Dunkelheit einhergeht, lässt das Knarren des Holzbodens und die Töne der Klangschale, die jetzt umherwabern, besonders laut erscheinen. “How often I can’t see what is in front of me?”, heißt es auf dem Flyer zur Veranstaltung – eine Frage, die den Abend einläutet und gleichsam erlebbar wird durch das Sehenwollen, das eine regelrechte Dringlichkeit erlangt.
Langsam werden Umrisse sichtbar. Die Musikerin Hoshika Yamane, die den Abend mit ihrer live erzeugten Musik mitgestaltet, ist dezent am rechten Bühnenrand positioniert; die gesamte Länge der Bühne ist mit einer Art Baldachin aus Zeitungen abgehangen, der durch die Bewegung der Luft in sanftes Wogen versetzt wird. In der Mitte nur zu erahnen befindet sich die Tänzerin Tiziana Longo, die diese Choreografie entworfen hat, unter einem Haufen aus weiteren Zeitungen, die, wie sich später zeigt, zu einem Umhang zusammengefügt sind. Dieser Zeitungsberg bleibt zunächst ganz still, auch noch, als der Raum plötzlich und ohrenbetäubend von Stimmen erfüllt wird. Wir hören Donald Trump, der in rassistisch-menschenverachtender Manier gegen “the Mexicans” hetzt, wir hören Berichterstatter*innen, die Horrornachrichten aus aller Welt vermelden. Wie auf einer Pressekonferenz kommt dieser Stimmensturm nach und nach durch das Klicken der Kameraauslöser, die alles übertönen, zum Erliegen.
Das Thema der Performance scheint so zumindest teilweise gesetzt: Wie stehen wir eigentlich der Weltpolitik gegenüber oder auch einfach nur den Nachrichten, die zwar schrecklich sind, uns jedoch nicht dazu veranlassen, unsere Komfortzone zu verlassen, die abstrakt bleiben, sofern sie sich jenseits der persönlichen Betroffenheit abspielen.
Im Folgenden wird diese Frage nach der Wirkung der medialen Informationsflut auf die eigene Wahrnehmung mit persönlichen Geschichten von Frauen zusammengebracht, die als Ikonen gelten und die widersprüchlichen Gesichter unserer Gesellschaft zeigen sollen. Dies geschieht nicht mehr durch Einspielungen oder ähnliches, sondern nur durch den Tanz: der Fokus verschiebt sich nun ganz auf Tiziana Longo, die beginnt, sich unter dem Zeitungshaufen aufzubäumen, wieder zusammen sackt und schließlich in den Stand findet. Die eindringlichen Klänge, die Hoshiko Yamane zeitweise durch ausdauerndes Geigenspiel erzeugt, treten trotzdem in den Hintergrund, so fesselnd ist die körperliche Bewegung. Fast schamanenartig wirkt das bodennahe sich Wälzen unter dem Umhang, nicht erkennbar sind die Schritte, die Longo vollführt.
Bemerkenswert ist die tänzerische Ästhetik, denn sie ist so divers, wie die Frauen, um die es hier auch geht. Mal ist der Tanz wild und ungehemmt – etwa in einer der letzten Szenen, als sich die Tänzerin nackt im Zeitungsvorhang wälzt und ihre langen Haare fliegen lässt –, mal scheint der Tanz fast unbeholfen trippelnd, ohne dass sich ein verbindender Stil ausmachen lässt. Nur die Anklänge der japanischen Tanzform Butoh blitzen in den schamanenhaften, wilden und grotesken Momenten immer wieder durch, ohne die Performance hierauf festzulegen. Zwar lassen sich die Frauengestalten nicht unbedingt konkreten Persönlichkeiten zuordnen; anhand der verschiedenartigen tänzerischen Bewegung aber und der Kostüme, die von Ganzkörperverhüllung über Kleid bis hin zu Nacktheit mit High Heels reichen, lassen sich Frauenfiguren zuordnen, die gerade durch ihre körperliche Präsenz ins Verhältnis treten zu der Gesellschaft, deren Teil sie sind (oder gerade nicht).
Wir sehen hier eine andauernde Metamorphose des Tänzerinnen-Körpers, der umgeben von den Nachrichten, die über ihm knistern und wogen, sich zu diesen ins Verhältnis setzt. Betrifft es mich, wenn ich Donald Trumps sexistische Reden höre? Ja, scheint Longo uns zu zeigen, und formuliert körperlich, dass Informationen unabdingbar sind, um die eigene kritische Haltung zu stärken.
Physical newspaper reading
In the dance solo “MUT” the Motimaru Dance Company deals with questions of the subject-world relationship.
We enter the small studio of the Acker Stadt Palast in complete darkness. In groups of three we are guided to our seats by an employee using a small flashlight. The darkness brings maximum attention and I await the regaining of my ability to see, spellbound. The silence that comes with the darkness makes the creaking of the wooden floor and the sounds of the singing bowl, which now waft around, seem particularly loud. “How often I can't see what is in front of me?” Reads the flyer for the event - a question that rings in the evening and can be experienced through the desire to see, which becomes a real urgency.
Outlines slowly become visible. The musician Hoshika Yamane, who will help shape the evening with her live music, is positioned discreetly on the right edge of the stage; The entire length of the stage is hung from a kind of canopy made of newspapers, which is gently undulated by the movement of the air. In the middle you can only guess at the dancer Tiziana Longo, who designed this choreography, under a pile of other newspapers, which, as it turns out later, are put together to form a cloak. This mountain of newspapers remains completely silent at first, even when the room is suddenly and deafeningly filled with voices. We hear Donald Trump inciting against “the Mexicans” in a racist and inhuman manner, we hear reporters reporting horror news from all over the world.
The theme of the performance seems to be at least partially set: How do we actually face world politics or just the news, which is terrible, but does not cause us to leave our comfort zone, which remains abstract, provided that it is beyond the personal Play consternation.
In the following, this question of the effect of the flood of media information on one's own perception is brought together with personal stories of women, who are considered icons and are intended to show the contradicting faces of our society. This no longer happens through recordings or the like, but only through the dance: the focus now shifts completely to Tiziana Longo, who begins to rear up under the pile of newspapers, collapses again and finally finds herself standing. The haunting sounds, which Hoshiko Yamane occasionally creates through persistent violin playing, fade into the background, the physical movement is so captivating. The rolling under the cloak close to the ground seems almost shaman-like, the steps that Longo is taking are not recognizable.
The dance aesthetic is remarkable, because it is as diverse as the women we are talking about here. Sometimes the dance is wild and uninhibited - for example in one of the last scenes when the dancer rolls around naked in the newspaper curtain and lets her long hair fly - sometimes the dance seems to tremble almost clumsily, without a connecting style being discernible. Only the echoes of the Japanese dance form butoh flash through again and again in the shamanic, wild and grotesque moments, without defining the performance. It is true that the female figures cannot necessarily be assigned to specific personalities; However, based on the various dance movements and the costumes, which range from full body covering to dress to nudity with high heels, female figures can be assigned,
Here we see an ongoing metamorphosis of the dancer's body, which, surrounded by the news that crackles and sways above it, relates to it. Does it affect me when I hear Donald Trump's sexist speech? Yes, Longo seems to show us, and formulates physically, that information is indispensable in order to strengthen one's own critical attitude.
Photo by Hiroshi Makino Photo by Motoya Kondo
By Zitty Berlin
Tänzerin und Choreografin Tiziana Longo setzt sich in ihrem Solo mit der alltäglichen Nachrichtenflut auseinander und hinterfragt, was uns tatsächlich erreicht. Den medialen Overkill setzt sie in Beziehung zu Rechercheergebnissen, die auf Gesprächen mit Geflüchteten basieren. Die knapp 60-minütige Performance wird von eindringlicher Live-Musik von Hoshiko Yamara begleitet.
Das Tanzsolo “MUT” setzt unser eigenes Leben in Bezug zur Nachrichtenflut, die uns im Minutentakt erreicht und kaum etwas je zu verändern scheint. Dafür befindet sich der Tänzerinnenkörper in ständiger Metamorphose, verwandelt die Geschichten verschiedener Frauen zu Ikonen der widersprüchlichen Gesichter unserer Gesellschaft. Zeitungen werden lebendig, knistern, schwellen an und explodieren! Basierend auf zahlreichen persönlichen Gesprächen mit Geflüchteten auf der ganzen Welt, schärft MUT unsere eigene kritische Haltung und erzeugt durch die körperliche Interaktion, beispielsweise mit Live-Musik und Installationen, Schicht für Schicht ein Gefühl der Dringlichkeit.
In her solo, dancer and choreographer Tiziana Longo deals with the daily flood of news and questions what actually reaches us. She relates the media overkill to research results based on conversations with refugees. The almost 60-minute performance is accompanied by haunting live music by Hoshiko Yamane.
The dance solo “MUT” relates our own life to the flood of news that reaches us every minute and hardly seems to change anything. Instead, the dancer's body is in constant metamorphosis, transforming the stories of different women into icons of the contradicting faces of our society. Newspapers come to life, crackle, swell and explode! Based on numerous personal conversations with refugees all over the world, MUT sharpens our own critical attitude and creates a sense of urgency layer by layer through physical interaction, for example with live music and installations.
By Was geht heute Abend Berlin
MUT relates our own lives to the flood of news that reaches us every minute and yet rarely changes us deeply. Instead, the dancers’ body is in a constant metamorphosis, transforming the stories of different women into icons of the contradictory faces of our society. Newspapers come alive, crackle, swell and explode! Based on numerous personal conversations with fugitives from all over the world, MUT sharpens our own critical attitude and creates – layer by layer – a feeling of urgency through the physical interaction with the live music, installations, and audiences.
MUT – the German word for courage, refers in ancient Egyptian to the primordial deity of water, the cosmic mother of all life.Press commentaries.„Remarkable is the aesthetics of dance, because it is as diverse as the women who are the focus of this work
Theater XCAI Tokyo, 2017 & 2018
Photo by Hiroshi Makino
Connection between the world and the stage
Mariko Miyagawa Dance researcher
Tiziana Longo Solo Performance "MUT"
February 14, 2017 Venue Theater X
The biggest motivation for writing a stage critique is the kind of "writing urge" that performance brings. It can be very moving, shocking, or problematic, but in any case, we have to do something about it as a reaction. There is no such urge. It's very rare to see a performance that makes it happen.
It seems that this series will be posted irregularly, but here is a place to share how the author, who was a live experience, perceived such a vivid performance and what he felt and thought about. I want to make it function as.
By the way, during the performing arts season in February (many performances were held in Yokohama and the suburbs of Tokyo to coincide with the performing arts trade fair called TPAM in Yokohama), the most memorable one was Tiziana Longo.
It is a solo performance. It may be an unfamiliar name. She is from Italy and came to Japan after seeing a video of Kazuo Ohno at an archive at the University of Bologna, where she learned butoh from Yoshito Ohno and Mitsuyo Uesugi. After that, he also conducted fieldwork research on traditional dances in Japan and other parts of Asia, and since 2010 he has been working with Motoya Kondo as a Motimaru Dance Company based in Berlin. Her butoh solo performance "MUT" was performed at Theater X on February 14th. When you enter the audience seats of Theater X, you will be overwhelmed by the performing arts. A huge curtain made by connecting newspaper covers from the back of the stage to the sleeves of the upper and lower sides and the ceiling of the audience seats. By pulling and loosening it in places, it is shaded, making you feel like you are in a huge newspaper cave. A low sound like the sound of a bell rings, and it goes dark and the opening begins. In the faint light, you can hear the sound of the TV and the noise that seems to be. News spoken in various languages, including English and Japanese, tells of the ongoing world events, such as President Trump's remark "Mexicans should go out" or "Nuclear power". You can hear the word "." Meanwhile, a mass of newspapers that mediate such news emerges on the stage and moves around eerily. The newspapers hung on the ceiling swell and move as the shape of the newspaper mass changes. It is a wonderful performing art that connects the audience seats and the stage to the actual news and the stage space. The lump of newspaper gradually moves violently, runs as if it plunges into the curtain of the newspaper suspended so as to cover the back wall, and stops as one.
When the newspaper, which had maintained its shape to some extent, collapses, a woman in a black dress, a veil with only open eyes like a coat and a niqab, a hat imitating a large black rose, and black gloves appears. While hooking your foot on the newspaper, move forward to the center and slowly spread your hands. Suddenly, I bend my elbows and wrists and pull them toward the center of my body (technically, I want a little more strength to bite into my flesh and a more surprising rhythm). After that, I ran around with my hands up as if looking up at the heavens, jumping, grabbing a newspaper at a height that I could reach, and on the stage as if I was trapped but showed the best resistance in the space To move. Eventually, as if I noticed something, I came down to the audience seats and stared at the audience, hugged one audience in the front row (Is it a coincidence that Yoshito Ohno, the teacher of Tiziana), or another guest? After staring at her eyes, she returns to the stage. In this completely covered scene, her identity as an Italian naturally declined, and rather a Muslim woman emerged in the image of the audience. Here, Tiziana embodies a woman who silently appeals to us, which at the same time makes us feel some kind of awe and creates human interaction by nonverbal means. Well, I had such strength.
Then slowly return to the stage and fall into a poorly made pile of newspapers. This time, red gloves were put on the arm extended from that position. His hands hold his back, and vivid contrast with the black costume emerges. This red is taken over by the bloody red yarn that is pulled out from the inside of the clothes from the middle. Eventually, she took off her coat and appeared as a woman in an orange dress. She gently took off her hat from her head, and once she thought she had hugged her, she suddenly dropped it on the floor. Then he runs around and crumples the newspaper that runs to the ceiling. The ceiling, which moves in response to her movements, is like a fetal movement, and it makes me feel a little confused. Is the movement of crab crotch or bending back with a high-heeled mule the urge of a woman released from the austere costume I mentioned earlier?
However, there was still a long way to go for this transformation, which I thought would end here. Taking off the dress exposes the skin covered with black hair from around the knees to the chest. When I thought that I was intentionally posing like a fashion show and moving forward, I groaned like a threat to the audience. The expectation that a female nude will appear from under the dress is betrayed by this strange beast. Hook the mule on only one leg, stiffen your body as if you were out of control, and make it move like a robot. It is probably the influence of Butoh that shows the body deviating from the movements that can be imagined in daily life. Eventually, the accelerating movement collapsed, and he leaned his back on the pile of newspapers that he was not good at. After a long period of time, Tiziana peels off the hair that sticks to her body, and white skin gradually emerges. Eventually, she becomes bare skin and touches her belly like a pregnant woman. Then, while making a face as if laughing or crying, he slams the newspaper around his body, but the movement gradually becomes more intense. The hair is disturbed and the upper body is moved back and forth energetic, and the movement that releases the accumulated anger continues, and the body jumps away from the ground. Eventually, he crouched down as if he had released all his energy, and as he went dark, he heard a whisper like "my / child/waiting" and the curtain came.
Tiziana, who reappeared in the curtain call, was holding a box in her hand, and each of the spectators was given a small package as Valentine's gift.
The wrapping was a newspaper, with a note stating "From the one who hurt you the most" and tied with the same red yarn that appeared in the performance. Immediately after watching the stage, the impression she had was overwhelmed by the sense of the world she presented, but she had a feeling that she couldn't help. One reason for this is the last line. I thought this was a snake. Even without that line, the attribute of woman = mother has come to the fore with the production that emphasizes femininity on the way and the movement of lying naked and touching the stomach. Rather, this final production is too short-circuited to be female = child-bearing sex, and the multifaceted nature of women, which is represented by the transformation over time, such as newspaper → Nikabu → One Piece → beast, is taken into consideration. It seemed like it was gone. Ah, I was honestly disappointed that women would eventually be reduced to "giving birth" and praised.
However, when I looked back on the performance while writing in this way, I remembered that the entire theater space was originally a space like a womb surrounded by newspapers. In that space full of news, events that are happening in our world right now are repeated every day. Happiness, war, discrimination, poverty, everything is packed here. As the newspaper symbolizes, human beings produce a wide variety of things, including warm moments created by relationships between humans and violence. If women = the sex of giving birth to children, it is the human beings born of women who create such a world. It not only celebrates the birth of life, but also praises the woman who creates it but prepares to take on the whole world. The moment of violence also came from us. Each one will have to face such a reality and a world full of news. Perhaps Tiziana's last line represents us left behind in a time of stupor.
It's hopeless, depending on how you think about it. However, when I opened the last package, a small red heart appeared with the message, "Please forgive me, beautiful person." Perhaps it meant that the heart would come back, there was a red heart in the newspaper cut paper that imitated a pretty house. "Forgiveness". That won't be easy. But even in this situation, we must still stand in this world so as not to lose our heart.
By Tetsuya Miyata
Photo by Hiroshi Makino
Here below a part of the review written by Miyata:
This theme is part of the "13th Theater X International Performing Arts Festival 2018". Tiziana Longo and Motoya Kondo, who appeared on the day, studied under Yoshito Ohno at the Butoh Institute of Kazuo Ohno, and Sasa Inoue studied under Hironobu Oikawa. Tiziana and Kondo are based in Germany and have already reached the veteran territory. All three have renewed the impression of traditional Butoh.
In the solo MUT Tiziana has a bold stage art using newspapers. This installation and Tiziana are united but separated. The newspaper turns over like our own skin. Tiziana seems to go back and forth between this world and another world. In this way, Tiziana expressed the sense of materiality and the sense of life existence as Butoh, in its deep essence.
Old 505 Theatre, Sydney 6-10 June 2018
Venue: The Old 505 Theatre (Newtown NSW), Jun 6 – 10, 2018
Direction, Concept, Choreography, Dance: Tiziana Longo
Photo by Hiroshi Makino
The performance begins with a melange of sound clips from news reports all over the world, in a range of languages, many of which are foreign and incomprehensible, but there is no mistaking the gravity in every voice. Hidemi Nishida’s set design is a grand creation, formed entirely of newspaper and adhesive tape; we are drowned in the stuff, dreadfully familiar yet seductive. A figure starts to move, and a pile of discarded news begins to take human form.
Tiziana Longo’s dance presentation, Mut, can be seen as a discussion about society and culture’s prolonged and incessant attack on womanhood, with particular attention on the female body and its garments. We can also bring an interpretation to the work, that is concerned with information from the media, and the futile struggle in trying to locate truth among a barrage of commercial and political interests from the publishing world. It is timely work, and as such, Mut touches a nerve.
The music, by Hoshiko Yamane, is sensational, incredibly dramatic in its expressions of a realm that is darkly foreboding in its psyche. Longo’s choreography is liberated, lavishly imagined, with a sense of dystopian glamour that produces breathtaking imagery, rarefied and captivating, although not always sufficiently thought-provoking. As a performer, Longo’s presence can seem incongruously ethereal in sections that require something more grotesque, but when the heavy costumes are eventually shed, Longo brings her show to a conclusion that is as affecting as it is unpredictable.
We live in a civilization where men feel entitled to grab pussies at will, so it should come as no surprise to realize that women are constantly berated for how we look. No matter what kind of body we inhabit, or how we choose to dress, it is always open season on those of the female gender. In a world where we can do no right, it is a wonder that so many of us should remain conditioned in our insatiable need to please.
Photo by Hiroshi Makino
MUT BY MOTIMARU: INTENSE, DARK, FEMALE
by Lynne Lankaster
Direction , concept, choreography, and performance: Tiziana Longo
Music: Hoshiko Yamane
Lighting: Masaru Soga
Costumes: Jean Bessel
Tiziana Longo in MUTMotimaru’s MUT is the second work the company has brought to Sydney – last week I reviewed their TWILIGHT. Motimaru is a dance company founded in Tokyo by Motoya Kondo and Tiziana Longo, based in Berlin since 2010, who has taught and performed internationally. Their background is in performing arts, modern dance, martial arts, and Butoh. Motimaru defines dance as a way to experience the deeper reality of our existence and are experimenting to create a new authentic dance method beyond any genre. This new work, MUT, is a solo work, choreographed and performed by Tiziana Longo.
Some would regard it as intense, dark, claustrophobic, and possibly terrifying. According to the publicity about the work, it is a response to the endless daily news reports of disaster – bombings, terrorist attacks, catastrophes, etc in what seems to be almost information and emotional reaction overload. We are used to reading the newspaper and then discarding it – but if the newspaper came alive, what would it be like? The title MUT means Mother/courage/mutilated/mutual/multiracial and references the ancient Egyptian Mother Goddess – and/or perhaps Mother Earth?
It is a solo representing and including stories from many women of different countries and cultures that have come to be taken as icons and represent the contradicting faces of our society. MUT is also about information from the media, and how it can be manipulated, and the ceaseless attempt to discover the underlying truth behind various stories. It is also a caustic comment on the oppression of women and the way women are treated as well as the way the female body is viewed and un/covered.
Hidemi Nishida’s set – of newspaper pages and sticky tape – claustrophobically dominates the space. Some of it is cloudlike and gently breathing up above and there are two large piles of newspaper (at times the sticky tape used to keep the pages together shines like plastic) on the floor when we, the audience, enter.
Drip, drip, rustle rustle …. Hoshiko Yamane’s soundscape is relentless and driven, silences punctuated by throbbing, pulsating music and it also includes voiceovers, clock chimes telephone rings.
by Lauren Carroll Harris
MUT is a “collective solo that includes stories from women of different countries and cultures that come to be taken as icons and represent the contradicted faces of our society”.
By Rebecca Varydel
Motimaru Dance Company based in Berlin, bridges Japanese butoh, contemporary performing art, eastern philosophy, local and ritual dances of the world, will be presenting their two latest work Twilight and MUT soon in Sydney in Old 505 Theatre.
TWILIGHT -duo performance with Motoya Kondo
"ENERGY SHOOTS OUT TOWARD THE AUDIENCE"
Audrey review: An inky, fleshy trance that extends the Japanese dance theatre tradition of Butoh into a dreamlike, experimental performance.
By Lauren Carrol Harris
Old 505 Theatre, Sydney 29th May- 03rd June 2018
Photo by Anastasya Stolyarov
Photo by: Anastasya Stolyarov
A bare stage, a handful of lights, two bodies, a sparse score. It’s astonishing how much atmosphere a production can create with so little.
Over its 45 minutes, Motimaru Dance Company’s Twilight uses minimal effects for maximal impact to create an inky, fleshy trance that extends the Japanese dance theatre tradition of Butoh into a dreamlike, experimental performance.
It begins in deep shadow, with the rhythm of slow-falling dripping water.
Minutes pass as two bodies are slowly illuminated by a single light above them.
A man and a woman sit facing one another, legs wrapped around each others’ torsos, their faces covered with long black hair. These are the bodies of Motoya Kondo and Italian-born Tiziana Longo, who form Motimaru Dance Company, in Sydney for a two-show run at The Old 505 Theatre.
Though their faces are hidden and their bodies embrace, their energy shoots out toward the audience. Together, they form a kind of breathing tableaux that slowly begins to rouse. They are still but dynamic. There is nothing passive in their intense muscular control and something co-dependent and symbiotic about the way they relate.
For the next 40 minutes, they push to the limits of expression from that basic conjoined state. Fingers slide through hair, hands grasp, limbs reach out, they hook their heads underneath each others’ shoulders, sway from side to side, rock violently, and eventually withdraw to the ground.
Meanwhile, Hoshiko Yamane’s mainly finger-plucked orchestral score is sensitive to moments of silence, building in layers and harmonies at the piece’s most climactic moments.
The arc of Twilight is so grounded in its performers’ bodies, that when we finally, momentarily, glimpse Kondo’s face, it’s startling.
An avant-garde dance theatre form emerging from the fallout of World War II, shaped by the sensibility of German Expressionism, Butoh has been called the dance of gloom and darkness and disease.
And Motimaru is a pretty serious duo, indeed. They bring a great sense of conviction to what they do and all the stylized markers of Butoh are here: pale bodies silhouetted against a black abyss; an emphasis on visual impact; slow controlled movements; unusual bodily manipulations; a heavily theatrical inclination.
Yet Twilight isn’t dark. It’s thoughtful.
Though it’s tempting to see their melded bodies as animalistic, I think Longo and Kondo are nudging toward the human and elemental rather than the idea of a creaturely organism. They’re floor-bound, as close to naked as they can be, as close to genderless as possible, and going through the rawest of emotional shifts as they collaborate from second to second.
Kondo and Longo shifted to Berlin eight years ago after founding their dance company in Tokyo. Their backgrounds have led them to combine yoga, martial arts, and modern dance, but it doesn’t seem piecemeal. Rather, they’ve found an accumulative approach to movement that calls on the ancient to make something new and contemporary.
It’s a sign that the 20th Century art of Butoh is evolving, which makes its presence at this modest inner-west Sydney theatre, run by artists, all the more significant.
Australia’s theatre culture is verbal, driven by dialogue and character. That’s no bad thing, but it’s wonderful as a Sydneysider to have the chance to experience another kind of live performance that comes from a purely physical, visual, and aural space; something more about the image and feel of what’s being created rather than plot, a little closer to contemporary performance than a traditional stage play.
In their stage notes, Kondo and Longo refer to the emergence of homo sapiens from the primordial sludge. But the progression of these two bodies in Twilight could be read in any number of ways: as a metaphor for evolution, for a relationship, for life from beginning to end.
The show is not inscrutable, and yet searching for a message or an explicit theme doesn’t feel right. Motimaru makes image-driven, emotional work to be experienced rather than intellectualized.
This is a cleansing, meditative work and an invitation to tap into art at an instinctual level, disconnected from the screens and images and emails of the day.
By Lynne Lancaster
Photo by : Natascha Morokhova
Motimaru is a dance company founded in Tokyo by Motoya Kondo and Tiziana Longo, based in Berlin since 2010, who has taught and performed internationally. Their background is in performing arts, modern dance, martial arts, and Butoh. Motimaru defines dance as a way to experience the deeper reality of our existence and is experimenting to create a new authentic dance method beyond any genre.
TWILIGHT the first of two productions they are performing here in Sydney is dark and mysterious, powerful and hypnotic, taking us to a trance-like meditative state. Is the work perhaps evoking the creation of the world eons ago? It is full of the elemental forces of nature, combining and contrasting quietude and forceful movement.
The soundscape by Hoshiko Yamane includes dripping water, a pebble repeatedly dropped, the sound of various insects at night, tinkling yet stormy crashes, and fast, surging bamboo pipe music.
At first, all is almost total darkness. Eventually what emerges appears to be one organism but is actually two, tightly entwined: the blending of Yin and Yang? Kondo and Longo are sculpturally enfolded for almost the entire show. They mostly are melded together but split explosively, or come together very intensely and passionately clinging together. As this is a Butoh-based performance, an arm moves, a leg moves – gliding very slowly. The hand is like spiders inching across the universe of skin. There is convulsive rocking contrasted with backbends, or arms held high at some points with hands angled like barbed wire. For one section it is like the dancers are floating underwater. Both performers have silky long black hair that cascades like inky moonlight.
Exploring dance based on the Butoh style TWILIGHT examines the purpose of human existence, and evoking nature tries to discover the very meaning of Life.
By Rebecca Varydel
Photo by Irigenia ProudActions
Motimaru Dance Company based in Berlin, bridges Japanese butoh, contemporary performing art, eastern philosophy, local and ritual dances of the world, will be presenting their two latest works Twilight and MUT soon in Sydney in Old 505 Theatre.
Keeping the roots into the butoh founders´ work and contextualizing it in a wider performance dance scene drawing pathways toward the future, the choreographers and dancers Motoya Kondo and Tiziana Longo have been studying in Japan and sharing their works for 10 years now.
"Twilight" is a rare chance to experience their visually striking dance performance as a profound ancient and cathartic world in which the audience is included in an Emphatic ritual space where the borderline of the self starts fading and the dualism in between melting.
The dancers and audience, man and woman, human and animal, life and death, everything and nothing, start blurring into vague forms where all the boundaries, contours, shapes, and colors disappear altogether.
Like a mirage a new landscape comes to life, a sacred cave for the audience where to enter, that functions through the dance as a mirror for the audience to reflect on. The original movement vocabulary rich of strong images and their aesthetics is a polyphonic pure motion, like an unceasing stream, overcoming any ordinary rhythm and choreography and where the real and the mythical intermingle, beyond consciousness. The piece intends to offer a refuge for contemporary society that is fulfilled with conflicts between individuals, countries, and religions, by connecting back to deep physical reality and to an even more profound dream-like transient world.
Theater Delphi, Berlin 20th-22th September 2019
Acker Stadt Palast in Berlin 7th October 2016 & 30th October 2017
Festival LuckyTrimmer in Sophiensaale in Berlin 25th and 26th March 2016
No Ballet International Festival in Ludwigsburg 2016
By Andre Sokolowski
Photo by Rebecca Stella
Es beginnt in einem fast Stockdunkeln, unter lauter tropfenden Geräuschen:
Nach und nach werden wir Zuschauenden, Zuhörenden in den völlig abgedunkelten Vorführungsraum des Ackerstadtpalasts einzeln hineingeleitet - eine Mitarbeiterin des Hauses sekundiert uns mit der Taschenlampe; absolutes Ruhigsein wurde uns bereits schon vor dem Einlass bittend auferlegt...
Dann - zu Beginn von Twilight - dieses anhaltende Tropfen. Wie als wärest du in einem feuchttropenem Biotop, inmitten eines Regenwalds...
Allmählich zieht so was die fernlichtene Dämmerung herauf - im Hintergrund wird ein davon- oder vorbeiziehendes Kurzgewitter simuliert (Licht: Hendrik Haupt / Komposition und Live-Musik: Hoshiko Yamane)...
Erseh-, erahnbar ist ein in sich un- und überschlung'nes Menschenpaar, was mittels seiner Hand-, Fuß-, Arm- und Beinbewegungen eine sich ruckhaft öffnende und hiernach wieder schließende Pflanzengestalt darstellt...
Werden und Sein und endendes Vergehen...
Motoya Kondo & Tiziana Longo (diese zwei PerformerInnen) wiegen, strecken, bäumen, wackeln, zittern ihre beiden Körper, dass man stellenweise meint, es wären dehn- und schlenkerbare Gummipuppen, die sich so vor ihrem Publikum entfalten; ihr erzeigtes Glieder-, Rumpfarbeiten lässt uns einen Grad an Körperbeherrschtheit erahnen, der fast menschenunmöglich erscheint...
Erst ab der Hälfte dieses einstündigen Stücks wird sichtbar, wo und was die Köpfe der zwei TänzerInnen sind - sie hatten ihre langen schwarzen Haare während der Performance über ihr Gesicht "gehängt"...
Aus Blumenblüten exponieren Menschen oder umgekehrt...
Der dritte der drei musikalischen Akustik-"Blöcke" klingt etwas wie Arvo Pärt - Hoshiko Yamane zaubert aus ihrer Bratsche schier betörende Musik...
Am Schluss (ohne Geräusche) steht das Paar Motoya Kondo & Tiziana Longo fern-stillschweigend vor uns, mit dem Rücken an der Wand...
Photo by Irigenia ProudActions
Other links about TWILIGHT:
Roxy Theater, Basel, 10th October 2014
SPAGHETTI -solo performance
Tatwerk Performativ Forschung, Berlin, 23th November 2019
Concept, Choreography and dance by Tiziana Longo (Motimaru)Music composition: Ilya Gertman
by Art Connect
Interview/Gesprach SBS Radio Germany