In Repose

In Repose small

Space Theatre

In repose is a collaboration of story-telling, music, dance and photography from the travels of a group of artists on a spiritual journey in search of the burial sites and history of Japanese Australians. The performance tells of the culmination of months of hard work and travel to some of the most remote parts of Australia. At each site they perform a kuyo, which is a Japanese term describing the act of ceremonial offering to respect, honor and calm the spirits of the deceased.

Mayu Kanamori, a Japanese born artist wants to capture the history of these burial sites through her photography before they succumb to housing developments and the ravages of time. The performance in the space theatre takes the audience through the performers experience, narrated by Vic McEwan and Mayu Kanamori, and accompanied by projections of her photography as well as video by Shigeaki Iwai and Darren Baker.

Wakako Asano, a Tokyo born dancer brings her own interpretation to the sites and her choreography is presented to respect and honor the deceased. Asano intersperses dance amongst the story telling, revisiting the choreography she performed at each remote location for the audience.In Repose

Satsuki Odamura is a Japanese koto virtuoso. Playing the instrument for Asano's choreography and as her own tribute to the burial sites, Odamura demonstrates great skill and emotional depth in her recital.

The story telling in this production is very strong and moving, and the passion of the artists is evident. The dancing was more contemporary than interpretive and only occasionally appeared to support the narrative, however it was still mesmerizing to watch and very meditative.

Overall the production is a reflective one, entertaining on an informative level. For the spiritually minded and open minded alike this is an enjoyable, relaxing night of performance.

Paul Rodda