Dairakudakan Temptenshiki

Space Insect

Overwhelming as individual and mass, Akaji Maro’s Dairakudakan expands the world of Butoh

Akaji Maro founded Dairakudakan, the Butoh company in 1972. Trained and inspired by Butoh founder Tatsumi Hijikata, Maro was also an actor with Juro Kara’s famed angura (underground) theater troupe, Jokyo Gekijo (Situation Theater). Since the 1960s to the present, Maro has been a chimeric figure working crossing over the borders of several genres. Many leading Butoh dancers started their careers at Dairakudakan, including Ko Murobushi, Ushio Amagatsu (Sankai Juku), and Isamu Osuka (Byakkosha). At Kochuten, the company’s studio in Kichijoji, west Tokyo, many young Butoh dancers continue to perform today. The principle element of Maro’s praxis is temptenshiki: the idea that being born into the world is a great talent itself. The company gathers and reconstructs the fecund body and human movement and behavior every individual possesses inherently, securing a physicality that can countervail the spectacular stage direction, in order to convey a vivid, contemporary style of Butoh around the world. Space Insect is one of the company’s most alluring and popular recent works, premiered at Setagaya Public Theatre in 2014 and subsequently staged in Paris and Vancouver. This Maro-esque fantasy, a grand physical spectacle featuring 22 members of the company, traverses between motifs of humanity and insect as it sounds a warning to contemporary society. In the unbridled music of the two extremes of Detroit techno pioneer Jeff Mills and shakuhachi player and composer Keisuke Doi, we can sense the company’s haphazard appetite that has continued for over 40 years. Dairakudakan, whose boundless strength has carried Japanese Butoh so far, once again utterly overwhelms.

Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza


Founded in 1972, Dairakudakan is led by Akaji Maro, practicing a unique style of Butoh he calls tempu-tenshiki (literally, “natural gift style”: being born into the world is a great talent in its own right). It collects what Maro terms miburi-teburi, forgotten yet elementary human movements and behavior, and reconfigures them as dance. The company’s work has been staged worldwide, appearing first on the international scene in 1982 with performances in France and America, and has had a strong influence on Butoh. The company also places a high emphasis on training young dancers. Based on Maro’s concept of ichinin-ippa, the idea that each individual should be able to express and create their own movement vocabularies, the company established the Kochuten studio in Kichijoji, west Tokyo, for younger members to make and tour their own work as a separate ensemble. The company also runs public workshops and an annual summer intensive program in Hakuba, a village in Nagano Prefecture.

Choreography and directionAkaji Maro
MusicKeisuke Doi, Jeff Mills
CastAkaji Maro, Takuya Muramatsu, Ikko Tamura, Atsushi Matsuda, Tomoshi Shioya, Barabbas Okuyama, Daiichiro Yuyama, Kohei Wakaba, Naoya Oda, Yuta Kobayashi, Yoshihiro Kim, Seiya Miyamoto, Emiko Agatsuma, Akiko Takakuwa, Naomi Muku, Azusa Fujimoto, Jongue Yang, Oran Ito, Yuna Saimon, Aya Okamoto, Sakura Kashiwamura, Mai Taniguchi
CostumesKyoko Domoto
Costumes assistantMikaTominaga
Stage ArtYasuhiko Abeta
Iron worksKiyoto Honda
Stage managerKazuhiko Nakahara
Stage productionTsubasaTanaka, Kenta Sakazume, Seiichi Otsuka
Lighting designNoriyuki Mori (balance,inc. DESIGN)
Lighting operationMami Tabata
SoundSatoshi Oikawa (SHOW-YA projecT)
Company managerRyo Yamamoto
Company producerYoko Shinfune
Produced byDairakudakan
Presented byKyoto Experiment