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date: 24 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Butoh dance is informed by the principles of Noguchi Taiso, a form of movement training whereby practitioners become accustomed to sensing small movement variations and to perceiving outer forces acting on their bodies, so that their movements result from that particular kinaesthetic engagement. Movement in this butoh appears not to rely on the practitioner’s intention to move, but that he or she is moved by invisible forces. The chapter explores this aspect of butoh through discussion of a set of exercises. It argues that through the enhancing of kinaesthetic sensitivity, the transcending of physical disabilities, and a fostering of connection with other practitioners, the practice potentially transforms conventional notions and experiences of the bodymind: as practitioners of butoh-with-Noguchi taiso seek the ‘origin of movement’ beyond what they would normally consider as physical limits of their bodies, they also cultivate an extended notion of bodymind that is potentially healing.

Keywords: butoh dance, Noguchi taiso, kinaesthesia, kinaesthetic imagery, metaphor, communitas

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