Yurabe Masami: Underworld Flower

Kyoto Butoh-kan Underworld Flower
Choreography and Butoh by Yurabe Masami   Additional Dance by Inagaki Miwako

Thursday February 14, 2017.
Performances the 2nd and 4th Tuesday thereafter.

Shows at 6pm and 8pm.
Each performance approx. 50 minutes in length.
House opens 20 minutes before curtain.

Entry costs 3000JPY.
Student rate 2500JPY w/id.
No infants, please.

Reservations please: only eight seats per performance.


Since ancient times, we have been fascinated by flowers. Flowers are ever present at festivals, funerals, ceremonies, and such places of deep memory.
This fleeting life, an ephemeral flower blossom—do we not discern a world beyond time in that transitory beauty?
This “beyond time” is expressed in Japanese by the word yomi, which refers to the world below. Yomi is a place of both return and resurrection.

This place where the dead dwell is not an isolated otherworld, but extremely near. For instance, during sleep or in the depths of words. Every single night asleep, we live in the world of yomi, then return home accompanied by new breath and vitality.
Rather than isolated islands, aren’t our bodies within a great ocean beyond time?

Is it not this new breath from yomi that causes flowers to bloom?

Butoh is for me an expression of this.
Not a presentation of something with our bodies—but to feel that the body itself becomes an outrageous miracle of a flower.
Along with your own body too, the viewer’s…

Yurabe Masami
Spring 2017


The Performance
Yurabe Masami
Yurabe Masami was a founder member of the seminal Butoh group Tōhōya-Sōkai. In 1982, he began working as a solo performer, dancer, and director. He has since worked on many dance pieces and collaborations. In 2000 he was invited to perform in France at the opening of the Biennale de la danse, said to be one of the biggest dance festivals in Europe. He has been invited numerous times to perform abroad, including the Melbourne Dance Festival (2002), Daejeon and Daegu Dance Festival in Korea (2005), and in 2006 to the SUL-X Dance Festival in Portugal. Concurrently for 2005 and 2006, he was invited by Butoh pioneers Akira Kasai and Ohno Yoshito, along with the poet Kawamura Satoru, to plan the workshop and performance series Reverse Side of the Body. He is active on many levels, such as collaborating with traditional Japanese Bunraku puppet theatre. Through many years leading workshops and classes, Yurabe Masami is pursuing new arteries of Butoh dance in the conjunction between techniques and differing perspectives of the body. In 2008 in west Kyoto, he opened his own open-air performance space, ALS-D. He holds daily classes and conducts various dance events.
As a producer of “The Question of Butoh” series in 2015 and 2016, he leads the next generation of dancers in finding meaning and value in Butoh for the contemporary era.


Inagaki Miwako
Inagaki Miwako has been studying under Yurabe Masami since 2013, and is quite active in various dance events.

Place Option
51-2 Koromonotana-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto
Kyoto Subway: Five minute walk from Karasuma line or Tozai line, Karasuma Oike station, Exit #6. / Hankyu Train: Ten minute walk from Kyoto line, Karasuma station, Exit #22.
Performances the 2nd and 4th Tuesday thereafter. (from 14 March 2017 to 26 December 2017)
Shows at 6pm and 8pm.
Entry costs 3000JPY. Student rate 2500JPY w/id. No infants, please.