How to write dance in japanese

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January 20, 2011

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Watashi-tachi wa maishū do-yō ni odori ni kurabu ni ikimasu.
We go to the club every Saturday night so we can dance.

Dansā ga purattohōmu de odotte iru.
The dancers are dancing on the platform.

Dansā ga purattohōmu de odoru.
The dancers dance on the platform.

Dansā ga purattohōmu de odotta.
The dancers danced on the platform.

purattohōmu de odoru
dance on a platform

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Dance - English to Japanese Translation of Dance | Japanese Dictionary

5 translation entries available
English dance
Type noun
Japanese 舞踏会
Hiragana ぶとうかい
Pronunciation butoukai
at a dance
English dance
Type noun
Japanese ダンス
Hiragana だんす
Pronunciation dansu
dance culture
English dance
Type noun
Japanese 舞踊
Hiragana ぶよう
Pronunciation buyou
dance group
English dance
Type noun
Japanese 踊り
Hiragana おどり
Pronunciation odori
Do you like dance?
English dance
Type verb
Japanese 踊る
Hiragana おどる
Pronunciation odoru
dance samba
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full · たっぷり

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Japanese dance traditions

Japanese folk dances

Japanese folk dance has ancient traditions that have been preserved for over a thousand years. Thanks to this Japanese commitment to tradition, today people have a breathtaking glimpse into the past of this island nation.

The folk dance art of Japan originated in ancient times. Dances were part of the daily life of the people (ritual dances-spells, dances-prayers for the sending of harvest or rain, dances of gratitude, offerings to the gods, etc.).


According to ancient legend, the first dance. the performance in Japan took place at the beginning of the "era of the gods", when the earth had just separated from the sky. The supreme deity of the Shinto cult, the sun goddess Amaterasu Omikami, became angry with her mischievous brother, the wind god Susanoo, and took refuge in a heavenly grotto. The world plunged into darkness. To lure the bright goddess back, the gods staged a dance in front of the grotto. a performance during which the goddess Ame no Uzume no mikoto performed the sacred dance pantomime kagura. Attracted by noise and music, Amaterasu left her hiding place and once again gave light to the world.

Types of dances:

Japanese dance is divided into "mai", restrained and calm, and "odori", sharp and rough.

"May" is a direction of choreography that arose in ancient times from ritual Shinto dances. The word "may" is translated as rotation. It was based on the ancient dance mysteries "Kagura", in memory of which a kind of theater stage is still preserved in Shinto shrines. Shinto cultists spun in masks and with bamboo branches in their hands. Over time, bamboo was replaced by fans, and the May dance laid the foundation for the choreographic direction of the noo theater.

Odori is a dance where music is more important than gestures. This choreographic direction appeared thanks to the Buddhist jodo sect, very popular among the common people. Several people repeated a simple prayer and during this ritual they sometimes jumped on the spot. The dance accompanied by bells is called "nenbutsu odori".

Varieties of dance

Butoh (Japanese: 舞踏 , butoh:) is a style of contemporary Japanese dance. The first production in the butoh style in 1959 was performed by Tatsumi Hijikata based on the novel Forbidden Colors by Yukio Mishima. There are no jumps, jumps, or rotations in butoh. Sometimes there is no movement at all - just holding a position, standing or squatting with no apparent intention of ever getting up again. Hijikata saw dance as a conglomeration of body and form, existence and reality.

They are not something that dances, rather they enjoy human experiences - screaming, crying, hugging, eating and drinking. They bring us face to face with our existence as human beings with their own unique personality. There is an effect of embodied expression, representation of bodies in their real form of existence .

Kagura (Japanese: 神楽 , かぐら ?, God's joy) - ancient Shinto ritual dances - dance pantomime, accompanied by playing the drum and flute. The main content is the myth of the sun goddess Amaterasu. It arose for the first time in the 7th - 8th century, finally formed by the 9thcentury. The name of the ritual - 神懸鎮魂 is translated as kamigakari (jap. 神懸 ?) - a prophecy received from the kami; and tinkon (jap. 鎮魂 ?) - appeasement of the spirit. In ancient times, dances were accompanied by 2 small choirs that asked questions and answered them by singing. The dances were also accompanied by drumming and flute playing. At first, Kagura was performed by priests, and later by professional actors.

The actors hold sacred things in their hands: suzu - a sacred rattle, gohei - a temple offering, a fishing rod, mulberry leaves, a hoe and others. The very first dances were held right on the ground, later special temple scenes were created for dancing - Kagura-den. The most ancient dances consisted of 75 acts, and lasted the whole night from dusk to dawn. The content of Kagura was the myth of the goddess Amaterasu, the idea of ​​which was the death and resurrection of the god. Kagura have survived to this day, but in a much more simplified form and sometimes take the form of mass, entertaining performances. In addition to the legend of Amaterasu, moralizing or comic scenes are played out.

Nihon-buyo- traditional Japanese dance. Nihon buyo has a rich historical background. Known for its exquisite movements, emotional expression, and symbolic gestures, nihon buyo has evolved from the various dance traditions present in Japan. The beginnings of Japanese dance have their roots in ancient mythology.

Para-Para - modern Japanese dance. This is a special style of dance where all the dancers repeat a certain set of movements, practically without moving from their place. Often these movements involve clapping, and moving in place is like rocking from side to side.

The dance originated with a light suggestion from the West. In the early eighties, such a style of music as Eurobeat was born in Italy, but then died, because for a European listener this music turned out to be more than incomprehensible. But Japanese DJs liked the new sound, so soon a Japanese recording studio bought the rights on Eurobeat and began to actively release records with new compositions.

However, there was still nowhere for young people to dance, because completely different music was popular in the clubs, and only “decently dressed” were allowed in, while most young people preferred flashy Western clothes. And yet this dance managed to win the hearts of people not only in Japan, but all over the world.

Japanese folk dance is a whole theater that uses numerous attributes: towels, umbrellas, swords, fans, hats, masks and much more, everything that is used in ordinary, everyday life. The Japanese fan, for example, is a symbol of happiness, so it is used in Japanese dance quite often to express joy and satisfaction with life. An umbrella in the dancer's hand will help him talk about the rain. The hat protects the peasant's face from the sun, so the dancer in the hat talks about agriculture. The sword, of course, is the indispensable weapon of the samurai. The clothes of the dancer are also endowed with meaning. The same samurai will be dressed in baggy hakama pants, the actor depicting spring will wear a kimono painted with cherry blossom branches.

Butoh dance as a method of psychosomatic research. Toshiharu Kasai

The Butoh dance, analyzed by T. Kasai as a method of psychosomatic exploration and integration, is described in this paper along with examples of practical exercises of the Noguchi Taiso system and elements of body practices from Takeuchi's classes. The author has used Butoh's method for psychological practice also in Russia and Ukraine, and has noticed a significant need to use this method along with Western psychosomatic systems. This paper describes the content of the Buto method and gives a sequence of exercises to prepare for it. Examples of work with specific parts of the body show the practical effects of the method, the purpose of which is to expand our understanding of the relationship between body and mind, and also to draw attention to the fact that the Butoh dance offers an alternative approach to the idea of ​​holistic self-realization.

1. Psychosomatic approach in Japan
In the West, there are many ideas and methods for integrating body and mind: the Alexander technique, sensory awareness, Gestalt therapy, bioenergetics, the Feldenkrais method. All these systems are also presented in Japan. J.P. Plummer described and compared these techniques and methods of psychosomatic therapy in detail in terms of body shaping and muscle imbalance. J. Nicholls and S. Carey compared the Alexander technique with more than 20 different psychosomatic approaches, classifying them in terms of depth psychology, bodywork and Western esotericism.
The Butoh method described in this article was influenced by two psychosomatic systems: one of them was created by M. Noguchi, the other by T. Takeuchi. Both of these systems are little known outside of Japan. Perhaps the basic understanding of the connections between body and mind in Noguchi and Takeuchi's systems is too different from the rather mechanistic Western image of the body-consciousness, so it is difficult for a Western person to understand their basic ideas. On closer examination, they are similar to the ideas of Western systems, and yet they seem to remain a mystery outside of Japan.
Noguchi compares the physical movements of the body with the structures of Japanese ideograms.
Takeuchi uses the term "karada-to-kotoba", i.e. "body-word as a single being", and never splits it into two - like Martin Buber's philosophical term "I-thou", i. e. inseparable unity "I - you". .
The physical exercises of the Noguchi Taiso system were first created by Michizo Noguchi in the 1970s, independently of Western methods, and have been adopted and used as an effective training system for actors and dancers who need relaxation of body and mind, movement without unnecessary tension in order to work.
The basic idea of ​​the Noguchi Taiso system is that our body is not a skeleton with muscles and flesh, but something like a bag of water, inside of which bones and entrails float. Noguchi also emphasizes body weight, saying, "listen to the god of gravity," and considers movements with minimal muscle tension and instantaneous release of that tension to be the most effective.
He writes that “muscles do not exist to resist or control gravity. Muscles are ears for attention to the words of the God of Attraction. “Noguchi Taiso does not restrict movement patterns, does not name movements according to the shape of the body, does not predetermine the purpose or meaning of movement…”

Toshiharu Takeuchi, one of the famous theater directors, began teaching drama classes known as Takeuchi Lessons in the 1970s using the Noguchi Taiso system. He was able to integrate this system into his ongoing study of how a deaf person might pronounce words.
In 1983, he attended the Carl Rogers Creative Lab in Tokyo, organized by the Japan Association for Humanistic Psychology, and made public his profound discoveries about the relationship between body and mind. In the field of humanistic psychology, this was one of the most important turning points regarding the topic of connections between mind and body. The author of this article also attended this workshop and had the opportunity to experience the effects of Takeuchi's school. One of Takeuchi's basic exercises, called "Ude no burasage" - arm relaxation - is a simple relaxation task. One participant relaxes their arm while the other slowly raises and lowers it. It was a shocking discovery for the author to find that his hand unconsciously helps to lift it and does not fall, even when it is completely released.
The results of a psychological study confirmed that 80 - 90% of people cannot release the tension in the hand when doing this exercise. Since then, the author of this article has been studying the connections between the body and mind through relaxation and stress relief, and has been practicing the Butoh dance in order to confirm theoretical concepts in practice.

2. Butoh Dance
Butoh Dance is an avant-garde Japanese dance style founded by Tatsumi Hijikata in the 1960s. It was a radical style of dance called "Ankoku Butoh - Dance of Darkness" and performed by naked dancers painted white. At the time, the Butoh dance looked shocking and eccentric, even in Japan, and retains its original aggressive momentum to this day.
Kanoko Hata, a Japanese Butoh dancer famous in Southeast Asia, writes:
— In contrast to the basic concept of “how to stand” offered by other styles of dance, Butoh dance, according to T. Hijikata, is based on an unstable body position - on such a body that cannot be made to stand by force of will, or an uncontrollable body that cannot be controlled by intention. ..
- The fundamentals of Butoh are: 1) keeping the body's center of gravity low, through the use of the Japanese bodily character "ganimata" - crooked, bent legs ; 2) extract gestures and postures buried in the darkness of history and release them through naked white bodies; 3) dance in a perverted, anomalous style.
The definition of Butoh may differ between different Butoh dancers, but this definition reflects his basic ideas. One of the interesting things here is highlighting the aspect of "archaeology of the body": digging up what is buried deep in the body. Something that looks unique compared to other dance styles.
Here are a few more aspects of the Butoh dance: 1) Butoh dancers never aim to perform high jumps or quick spins, as is customary in ballet; 2) in the hall where Butoh is practiced, mirrors are covered with a cloth to avoid visual perception of the body; 3) dancers pay much attention to breathing, bodily impulses and subtle reactions of internal organs; 4) For basic training, they use some Noguchi Taiso exercises.
Although the Butoh dance is a dance, it is not limited to the usual definitions of dance, especially Western ideas of dance with rhythmic and physically dynamic movements. In Butoh, the dancer can afford to stand still, or roll on the ground - if the need arises in his body.
Despite the fact that the Butoh dance has been recognized in world art as an exotic form of performance, its therapeutic effect on the unity of the body and mind is little known outside of Japan. In Japan, some Butoh dancers even give Butoh dance lessons in mental hospitals, and psychological research shows an improvement in the efficiency of the patient's recovery process.
This suggests that although Butoh is a dance art for performing in front of an audience, Butoh's technique is much more about what happens inside the body and mind of the dancer than how his body looks in front of the audience. Even when performing choreographic movements while performing on stage, in the Butoh dance, the continuous internal process of interaction between the body and consciousness is always the most significant.
Having practiced the Butoh dance since 1988, the author of the article found that this dance and the method of teaching it can be used for psychosomatic exploration and integration, as Butoh allows a person to experience their own naturally occurring emotions: anger, depression, grief, fear, joy, etc. Suppressed emotions that are unacceptable to show in social settings, Butoh allows you to show through physical spontaneous reactions: spasms, uncontrollable twitches, tremors, facial and body distortions, falling to the floor, stamping your feet, rolling on the floor, etc.
Butoh also provides an opportunity for our aesthetic and spiritual feelings to come to the surface from forgotten, repressed layers of consciousness, and this is often an experience of soul purification. The Butoh dance is often followed by deep relaxation and spiritual calm, as during meditation.
In dance therapy, there is a term "meditative dance", and sometimes Butoh looks like an example of such a dance. True, in Buto it is impossible to maintain meditative silence all the time - in our minds and bodies there are many explosive impulses that can make the dance very aggressive. Because of this unambiguous quality, a well-executed Butoh dance sometimes shocks the audience and even the dancer himself.
Butoh dance as a method of psychosomatic research has several advantages: 1) Butoh is suitable for perceiving the subtle relationship between conscious intention and unconscious reaction; 2) artificially induced emotional reactions sometimes reveal much deeper reactions of the body; 3) by practicing such a movement, a person receives relief and healing through dance; 4) the dancer always has the opportunity to adjust the level of physical and emotional tension in accordance with his condition.
Because the Butoh dance can be a challenge to penetrate into the deep, existential layers of the human essence, in the preparation phase it is extremely important to achieve relaxation and flexibility of reactions. For example, peaceful stillness and spontaneous laughter that appear after Takeuchi's exercises are indicators of readiness to take a step towards the unity of mind and body.
From here follow two stages, which include the Butoh dance as a method of psychosomatic research: the stage of relaxation and the stage of movement.

3. The Butoh Method

A. The Relaxation Stage

The following are some of the characteristic exercises from the Noguchi Taiso and Takeuchi Lessons systems, partly modified for use as preparatory exercises for the Butoh dance. Exercises are mainly performed in pairs, the roles of partners in pairs alternate. Each partner, having gained experience in the exercise, after changing roles becomes a helping partner. Role reversal means that the exercise is a case of mutual learning, showing the interdependence of body and mind responses, as well as individual differences.

"Ude-burasage" exercise: arm relaxation
It is often used as the first exercise in Takeuchi's Lessons. The exercise gives participants the opportunity to: 1) feel the tension in their hand; 2) touch the hand of another person; 3) feel the tension in the partner's hand; 4) to realize that it is not easy to let go of tension in the hand, and sometimes uncontrollable reactions occur; 5) laugh when you find that the partner's hand does not fall, even if it is released; 6) relax after the exercise, enjoying sharing the experience with other participants in the group. This format is usually followed by pleasurable physical exercises to warm up the participants' bodies and the atmosphere in the group.

Exercise Karada-Hogushi: body relaxation
The exercise looks like a massage: one partner lies on the floor, the other gently shakes his hand. But the purpose of this rocking is not to massage or stretch the muscles and tendons, but to give the partner a feeling of passive movement and the opportunity to observe what is happening with his body-consciousness. Massage is usually aimed at the muscles and tendons, and here the goal is to turn off the protective installations in the mind and body of a person, by giving the person some time to perceive his own body-consciousness.
In Takeuchi's Lessons, this type of exercise is very developed. Separate work is done with the arms, head, neck, legs, etc. The procedure is simple, but the most important point is the position of both partners in relation to the exercise. Each of the partners must open up and try to perceive what is happening inside and outside of his body-consciousness, as well as in the body and mind of the partner.
The interdependence of partners is often evident when the passive partner gets stressed out by the active partner's anxiety or tension. If touch is perceived as a frightening intrusion into the body-consciousness, the reasons for this need to be discussed for this couple. Body work may not be suitable or effective for people with mental illness, although there have been no serious problems with relaxation exercises.
The Hogushi arm relaxation exercise consists of tests of the elbow, shoulder and wrist: while one partner is lying down, the other takes his hand and raises it slightly, leaving the elbow on the floor. Then he releases his arm, checking for tension in the elbow.
It is surprising to find that this simple exercise proves difficult for most people doing it for the first time. Sometimes the Hand remains fixed, or twitches unconsciously. If there is tension, the helping partner feels it and talks about it. After a few attempts, most people get used to letting go of the elbow tension, but 10-20% of people continue to hold the tension and repeat clumsy reactions.
Then the assisting partner raises the arm higher so that the elbow is off the floor, and releases the arm again, this time to test the tension in the shoulder. Usually the shoulder reacts like a robot, with excessive tension. The task of the helping partner is to tell when and what part of the arm or shoulder is tense, and to give the partner the opportunity to feel what is happening in his arm and shoulder. From time to time, performing deceptive actions of supposedly raising or lowering the shoulder, you can explore the reflex reactions in the partner's shoulder muscles.
Because the wrist is lighter in weight than the whole arm, testing the wrist should be slower than testing the elbow or shoulder. You need to **put your hand on the floor with the inside of your palm up**, raise your forearm and place it vertically on your elbow, wrist bent back. When bending the arm at the elbow in the direction of the shoulder, the wrist falls in the direction of palm flexion. The exercise is called "cat's paw". In most cases, a person cannot wait to reach the point of the fall of the wrist, and involuntarily bends it.
After checking the release of tension in one hand, the second is checked.
Leg and head relaxation exercises are the same as with the arm. The important points of Hogushi's classes are 1) to make movements slowly so that the partner can feel unconscious reactions clearly; 2) show him where and when tension arises; 3) confuse him with deceptive movements and cause unconscious twitches in order to detect reflex reactions; 4) pay attention and give importance to stressful reactions, because they may be associated with psychological or physical trauma; 5) create an atmosphere of warmth and support during the exercise, because they are aimed at relaxing and calming the body and mind.
After working with three parts of the body, the partners in the pair change roles.
Although the exercise is not a massage, often after the cycles of tension-relaxation, people feel a deep relaxation of the body and mind, and sometimes the partner falls asleep during the exercise. Because falling asleep is not the goal of the exercise, the second partner should ask the sleeper if he prefers to sleep or study.
Some advice for those who can't let go of tension: don't necessarily try to let it go with intention, because diligent attempts unwittingly cause additional tension. Paying close attention to this part of the body is much more important than being obsessed with the idea of ​​trying to relax. The relaxation phenomenon happens on its own, after the transfer of control to the level of the unconscious.

Nenyoro Body Wave Exercise
Noguchi's concept of the body differs from the conventional, mechanistic or anatomical understanding of the body: "The human body is like a bag of water in which bones, muscles and entrails float. " The Nenyoro exercise is an opportunity to feel it.
One of the partners takes the ankles of the second partner lying on the floor with both hands and swings both legs together in a horizontal direction, creating waves from legs to head through the entire body. You can change the speed and rhythm of the wave, observing the reaction of the body to changes. The lying partner may discover that the body is not a solid object, but a soft container of liquid.

After relaxation exercises, the state of consciousness usually becomes deeper compared to the usual level - this is the state of mental readiness for motor exercises. Breathing techniques and exercises are sometimes used to speed up the diving process. Psychologists have noticed that it is this state of mind and body that helps with mental frustrations and conflicts - for example, it is used in autogenic training.

B. Driving stage

There are two types of Butoh dance - one is used to perform in front of an audience as performance art (conditionally it is called "Butoh level 2"), the other is intended only for the dancer himself and is performed when other people do not see him (Butoh level one). The last of these is the dance for psychosomatic exploration, and the description below refers specifically to this type of Butoh dance. Some movements may be similar to Noguchi Taiso or relaxation exercises, but their meaning and attitude to them change - ordinary exercises turn into Butoh movements.
In the process of performing the exercises described below, sometimes something different happens than can be expected within the given body movements. You must accept that your bodily reactions may take you from the state you were in to some unpredictable area. It is not necessary to be in a state of trance, but it is desirable to maintain the state of released control of consciousness over the body - so that uncontrolled reactions easily come to the surface.
As long as the reactions of the body guide you and you are able to go into unfamiliar movements without fear, these exercises are not dangerous for you. Accordingly, the decision whether to stop or continue depends on the person doing the exercise.
In the technique of autogenic relaxation training, founded by J.H. Schultz, involuntary reactions are called autogenous release. In dance therapy, spontaneous movements that occur uncontrollably are often referred to as "authentic movement" and are supposed to be avoided in cases of mental disorders and disturbances. But since the practice of Butoh is a challenge to travel into the realm of the unconscious, the ability to travel to and from that realm is a must. For gradual progress in this direction, it is usually sufficient to consistently, carefully perform all of the above steps.
These exercises can serve as a key to the state of mind and body described above. They do not have to be mastered perfectly, but this is the starting point of "Level 1 Butoh".

Intentional contortion of body parts sometimes causes a reaction of further distortions, fixations or thrusts in the face, arms, trunk, back, legs, etc. ... Since movement of this type is not found or supported in other body-oriented systems, curvature of the body can be considered a characteristic of Buto, which just shows the dark side, the suppressed phenomena of our consciousness and body. The writhing of the face, which at first seems ridiculous, can turn into muscle vibrations, a tic, then causing a chain reaction of contortions in other parts of the body. Sometimes it is necessary to let go of some twisted parts in order to move on to bending others.

Vibrations and Waves
When you stand with your legs bent (a position often used in bioenergetics), vibrations and waves naturally occur in your knees and hips and travel throughout your body. At first, it is difficult to maintain vibration for a long time - the muscles begin to fix.
Body vibrations are performed only after relaxation exercises. Sometimes the vibration provokes more violent reactions - startling, non-directional jumping, leg jerking, etc., which lead to the "Butoh level 1" stage of movement.
To implement vibrations, as well as to avoid traumatic movements, it is necessary to increase the flexibility of the body.

Breathing patterns always affect the state of mind and body. Stanislav Grof noticed that any meditation system includes a change in the breathing pattern: long inhalations and exhalations make you calm and balanced, and short and fast breathing (such as increased breathing in S. Grof's holotropic therapy) can even lead to loss of consciousness. Since we usually suppress deep breathing, even just taking deeper breaths is already the first step towards the Butoh dance with unpredictable bodily reactions.

There are a few basic sequences and movement patterns in the Level 2 Butoh dance, but since they were designed and choreographed for stage performance, they are not as important for the body-psychological exploration described here. The conscious intention to move body parts usually causes the body to move according to plan.
In the Butoh dance, impulses to change movement or positions are usually caused by natural, unexpected stimuli - external sounds, light, temperature, internal sensations, pain, itching, etc. What matters here is not so much the movement that has taken place as the state of mind and body that invites and makes possible such sudden changes in body position. The state of consciousness and the movement of the body cyclically stimulate each other and replace each other, making cycles or spirals of change.
In ordinary dance classes, mental images are sometimes used, trying to direct the body to move in these images. If this practice keeps your mind focused and you move within the given images, you may even be tempted to look in the mirror and see if your movements match the images. Such movements are the product of your thoughts, this is not a Butoh dance, but an intentional behavior guided by images. Visual imagination can only be used for the initial impulse of movement.
The simplest exercise for Level 1 Butoh is any repetitive movement. When a particular movement pattern is performed many times, the initial impulse descends from the conscious level to a deeper, unconscious level. Unexpected changes in movement appear, provoked by internal causes, and this process leads you into an unknown - at least unplanned - area of ​​the body-consciousness. Vibration, breathing, and curvature of the body are key components of the process of body-psychological exploration and change.

Butoh dance for stage performance purposes is not discussed here, but it should still be added that the fact that other people are watching the person dancing is very important, even when it is “Level 1 Butoh dance”, i.e. dance for yourself. Human beings born and raised among humans are social beings, and the presence of other humans is a significant stimulant that affects the situation in the mind and body, and affects the dance.
Therefore, a dancer who practices only for himself, alone with himself, soon notices that during the solitary practice of Butoh, the degree of feeling of loneliness greatly increases in him. However, the experience of a deep sense of loneliness is necessary for the dancer to realize one irrefutable fact: at a deep level of consciousness, soul, spirit, body, etc.

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