June 12, 2013 21:00
‘Ao’ – blue or green, ‘mori’ – forest
Aomori – place of blue, green forests
Aomori is a prefecture of Japan in the region of Tsugaru, at the northern most tip of Honshu Island, with short summers and long arctic winters. Forests of blue, green, soft linear mountains and seas of deep navy blue enliven feelings with colour in autumn. In winter, the repetitive silent snowfall arrives, transforming the landscape; the heartbeat slows down, the body is overwhelmed by a desire to rest, to lay horizontally in this blanket of white. A desire to be resisted, to move and be moved; nature has no sympathy.
In these extreme situations the body adapts to the environment to be able to endure these arctic conditions. The sounds, songs and dances of Tsugaru personify these landscapes.
Placing the body in a landscape orientation (horizontal); repetition poses a threat of disorientation; counting beat or pulse is a devised system of survival; where choreography is balanced on a fine line of order, which can easily tip into chaos. Over a duration of physical endurance, repetition becomes an emotive containment. Formality of choreography is contrasted by the informality of play, the action of dressing, of placing a ball in a pocket is a considered action, the blink of an eye, every action is an action of the body, even the voice.