4 min read

Butoh at Enishi-an Osaka

Butoh at Enishi-an Osaka
Butoh performance with my Teacher Maka Sowaka. Photograph: Shin Deguchi.

After myself and Tada's marriage in Japan, we were separated again for a long 6 months during which I travelled back home to Bath, England in order to close up a chapter of my life.

I spent every day saying goodbye to my possessions, furniture, clothes, trinkets and books which held the memories and grief of my life in England. Every other week I would go alone to the Goddess temple at Glastonbury to receive a healing and then go to the Red or White Springs to pray. After separations from some of my old friendships and loves, as well as my best friend moving abroad and getting engaged, I felt that a natural and profound ending was emerging.

Somehow with magical intention and practice, I managed to shift a huge amount of energy needed to move countries in the exact timing that me and Tada had predicted. After months of uncertainty, fear of collapse and the worlds increasing tensions I got to the end of my closing ritual in one piece.

*I want to say special thanks to my dear friend Asim, who helped close up a huge energy portal with me at the Bluecoat Gallery Liverpool, and also was an indispensable comrade during difficult and dark times. Thanks to my friend Matthew, a Somerset wizard who appeared just at the right times for things to move and align. Thanks to the wonderful people who run 'The Field' in Derbyshire for holding space for me at crucial times. Thanks to my friend Rosie for holding an extended sleepover for my final send off, and for sharing Jewish prayers and insights with me.

I once again landed in Glastonbury to pilgrimage around the Tor, Chalice Well, White Spring and Goddess Temple. There I booked my flight to Taiwan where I was to meet my mother and family again for the third time in my life, after being separated for nearly 20 years. I will be documenting more about this part of my journey in time to come.

Me and Tada met again in Kaohsiung, Taiwan at the train station gates.

After our beautiful holiday together in Taiwan with my whole family reunited and visiting temples every day. We again synchronistically found out that my Butoh Master and Teacher Mushimaru Fujieda and Maka Sowaka were to be holding a gathering in Osaka, around the time we planned to return to Japan. More specifically, this location of the gathering at Enishi-an was in Kawachi Province, where Tada's ancestor Nigihayahi no Mikoto was said to have landed in Japan on a heavenly rock ship carrying the Ten Sacred Treasures. We had visited the heavenly rock ship or Iwafune shrine on our last visit to Kyoto, and journeyed through the dangerous cave formation wearing a paper Shinto protection vest.

This was the first time Tada and I had practiced Butoh together with my teachers. It was a vibrant and mind spinning return for me back into the land of Japan. I was still in grief and turmoil over what I had just said goodbye to, and was nervous about what was coming up next for me in life.

This Butoh gathering felt different from the last. I felt my edges stretched, my ego burned and my skill levels tested. Tada and I had the privilege of being asked to perform with the Master and Teacher for our final performance, which was a threshold for us. However, we made it through, and managed to complete our performances, before feeling the ache and heaviness of deep practice on our bodies. Many great thanks to my teachers for providing us with an initiatory experience to expand our relationship with each other, the land and our practice.

Please enjoy the photographs from the gathering, and thank you to photographer Shin Deguchi for capturing it so beautifully.

Circle Facial Expressions Work.
Circle Work.
Rein Lo Final Performance.
Facial Expressions Work.
Group Performance.
Group Performance.
Group Performance.
Group Performance.
Mushimaru Fujieda and Tadaaki Hozumi Final Performance.
Mushimaru Fujieda and Tadaaki Hozumi Final Performance.
Mushimaru Fujieda and Tadaaki Hozumi Final Performance.
Facial Expressions Work.
Sowaka Maka and Rein Lo Final Performance.
Sowaka Maka and Rein Lo Final Performance.
Sowaka Maka and Rein Lo Final Performance.
Group Photo.