The set of the latest Ishinha production Roji-shiki is comprised of a multitude of cubic frames containing skeletal forms and fragments or shoes, bicycle wheels and other everyday objects. These are arranged and rearranged by the performers to take us through ever evolving worlds, each as atmospheric and surreal as the last.
Like the module stage set, the whitewashed dancers are individual parts of a greater whole who are systematically arranged and choreographed with the overall effect of being mere cogs in the most strange and magnificent machine imaginable. The unique chanting and refined movement come from a zen-like focus, with mathematical precision and repetition used to create a whole new system of rhythm.
Coinciding with the new production, the Museum of Osaka University is holding an exhibition and symposium on the art of Ishina, including recreations from Roji-shiki. The exhibition runs until December 12.
Roji-shiki was the opening production of Festival/Tokyo, a performing arts program that continues until the end of December. For more information check the website.