New York Butoh Institute Festival

By The New York Butoh Institute and Vangeline Theater
October 18 – October 21
Thursday through Saturday 8PM, Sunday 3PM

The New York Butoh Institute and Vangeline Theater


The New York Butoh Institute Festival 2018

VANGELINE THEATER/ NEW YORK BUTOH INSTITUTE aims to preserve the legacy and integrity of Japanese Butoh while carrying the art form well into the future. The unique art of Butoh originated in post-World War II Japan as a reaction to the loss of identity caused by the westernization of Japanese culture, as well as a realization that ancient Japanese performing traditions no longer spoke to a contemporary audience. One of the major developments in contemporary dance in the latter half of the 20th century, Butoh combines dance, theater, improvisation and influences of Japanese traditional performing arts to create a unique performing art form that is both controversial and universal in its expression. The Vangeline Theater is home to the New York Butoh Institute, dedicated to the advancement of Butoh in the 21st century.

Over the past 60 years, Butoh has become a universal and international movement language. Developed in post World War II Japan, the minimalist avant-garde dance form has grown, evolved, and traveled worldwide.

New York Butoh Institute celebrates the way the art form has grown and shifted in the 21st Century, ensuring the style is reflective and responsive.

Nicole Vivien Watson (U.K); Natalie Cuellar and Raimundo Estay (Chile); Alana Rosa (Brazil); Melissa Lohman (Italy); Margherita Tisato (Italy); Sindy Butz (Germany); Keren Shavit (Israel); Azumi Oe (Japan); Yokko (Japan); Mariko Endo (Japan); Sophie Amieva (Spain/France); Nurya Chana (U.S.); Will Atkins (U.S.); Raquel Almazan (Costa Rica/ Spain).

Thursday, October 18 at 8 pm:

Featuring: Nurya Chana (USA), Yokko (Japan), Margherita Tisato (Italy), Sophie Amieva and Will Atkins (France/ USA), Melissa Lohman (Italy/USA) and Raquel Almazan (Spain/ Costa Rica). 1 hour and 50 minutes with an intermission.

Friday, October 19 at 8 pm: 

Featuring: Nicole Vivien Watson (U.K.), Keren Shavit (Israel), Mariko Endo (Japan), Alana Rosa (Brazil); Azumi Oe (Japan), and Sindy Butz (Germany).
1 hour and 50 minutes with an intermission

Saturday, October 20 at 8 pm:

Featuring: Nicole Watson (U.K.); Natalia Cuellar and Raimundo Estay (Chile)
1 hour and 30 minutes with an intermission

The Mud Formed A Finger, Pointed explores creation myth and Messy Play, made in collaboration between Matthew De Kersaint Graudeau (Sound) and Ben Jeans Houghton (Sculpture). The Mud Formed A Finger, Pointed offers a study of the human body as an uncanny object that oscillates between figuration and abstraction, body and material, depicting an object becoming human, a human becoming an object and the protean states between. Nicole Vivien Watson emerges from an industrial bucket, her body covered in dripping, viscous liquid. The work embodies a contemporary creation myth that melds object and subject, abject and sacred, non-human and human. By invoking the narrative imagery of creation myths where humans are formed from the earth, within the aesthetic of the fetish Messy Play and through the language of Butoh, the performance links our understandings of the contemporary body and our imaginings of a primordial past.

Sunday, October 21 at 3 pm:

Featuring: Nicole Watson (U.K.); Natalia Cuellar and Raimundo Estay (Chile) 1 hour and 30 minutes with an intermission

“A spine chilling ancient ritual”  July 27th, 2012 – Leopoldo Pulgar Ibarra

Xibalba invites audiences to come closer to the complex world of the Mayan mythology, in a performance created by Natalia Cuellar, butoh performer and director of the Rutade la Memoria company (“Cuerpo quebrado”), who specializes on plays based on the concepts of Gender, Memory and Human Rights.

For more information about the festival or to enroll in the workshop and masterclass visit