Sister or He Buried The Body
Sister or He Buried The Body is conceived as a speculative remapping of the history of contemporary dance and its composition. Weaving the links between two seemingly distant dance cultures, the artist puts the body at the centre of his research exploring the ways in which it becomes a receptacle of memory, the past and historical characters who have inspired this work. Intertwining notions of time, history and transcultural references, it reveals the multitude of layers that make up the richness of history of contemporary dance.
Since 2013 Trajal Harrell has been looking closely at Japanese butoh dance and its founder Tatsumi Hijikata to develop works that combine a speculative remapping of the history of contemporary dance and composition. In Sister or He Buried The Body, he combines theoretical ideas from voguing with formal ideas deriving from Butoh dance.
Harrell’s solo performance advances many of his long-standing artistic discourses while delving deeper into Hijikata’s legacy, his speculative associations with African-American choreographer Katherine Dunham and her seminal research on Haitian Vodou, the death of Hijikata’s sister, and his attempt to archive her dead body in his own performance. Hijikata shared a studio with Dunham before he made his first butoh piece, leading to Harrell’s speculation that Dunham could be, in his words, “the long-lost mother of butoh.”
Choreography and performance: Trajal Harrell
Light design: Stefane Perraud
Costumes & sound design: Trajal Harrell
Music: Tom monteiro
Play wright: Sara Jansen
Diffusion: ART HAPPENS