Butohout! Forbidden Laughter Showcase


Janice Florence
Zya Kane
Trevor Dunn
Leisa Prowd
David Baker
Greg Muir
Antony Riddell
Sonia Marcon


Choreographer - Yumi Umiumare
Dramaturg - Maude Davey
Visual Installation - Pimpisa Tinpalit
Sound Design - Dan West
Lighting Design - Bronwyn Pringle
Producer - Takashi Takiguchi

This performance showcase, directed by Yumi Umimare, explored the theme 'Forbidden Laughter'. The word for laughter in Japanese, warau笑う, comes from the verb wareru 割れる – to break, crack or split. Multiple images, body movements and narratives are created through the focal point of ‘laughing’. Originally called Dance of Darkness, the Japanese art form of Butoh was conceived in the late 1950s during the social turmoil after the Second World War. It transcends the confines of specific culture, gender, status and religion, aspiring to be a universal expression that touches on the true nature of humanity. Forbidden Laughter conveyed strange and absurd stories woven between worlds, both mythically sacred and divinely carnal. The performance drew upon cabaret, bouffon, burlesque, physical theatre and visual art installation with a diverse cast of performers including Maude Davey and the BotohOUT! Ensemble alongside the cast of Weave Movement Theatre. 
“We are laughing, but always in a minor key”
Jana Perkovic - The Age
“…. a visually exciting and interesting performance designed to keep you on the edge of your seat: live dangerously!”
Shane Murphy – Daily Review
“.. notions of “the impossible task” are explored in vignettes and installations throughout the space.”
Hayden Burke – Australian Stage
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