m o r n i n g   w o r k s h o p

K e n   M a i

B U T O H   A E S T H E T I C S


Focusing on the body and spirituality,
seeking own individuality and creativity,
whilst working in the shadow of nature.


KEN MAI (born in Nara, the oldest capital city of Japan) is a Butoh artist, choreographer, and a teacher now based in Helsinki, Finland.

Ken Mai has been practicing Butoh for almost 30 years. He has studied with the founder of Butoh, Kazuo Ohno. He is a member of Byakkosha Butoh Company in Kyoto, Japan, and the well-known "Eguchi & Sumiko Modern Dance Company (German Expressionist Dance) in Osaka, Japan. 
Ken Mai has practiced Zen at Monastery & Temple in Nara and Kyoto for about 16 years. He's a certified Yoga Teacher from a Patanjali Yoga Foundation in Rishikesh, India. 

His style combines Butoh elements with acting, German expressionist dance, gymnastics, ballet, martial arts, music, singing, zen, philosophy of yoga etc. He's using natural exercises and movement, variety of image exercices, image and transformation work, Butoh Fu (Butoh Poetic dance), dance meditation.

Ken Mai has been performing solo, teaching, directing other companies, collaborating with acclaimed dancers, actors, musicians, sculptors and visual artists etc.

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 is a form of Japanese dance theatre that encompasses a diverse range of activities, techniques and motivations for dance, performance, or movement. Following World War II, butoh arose in 1959 through collaborations between its two key founders Hijikata Tatsumi and Ohno Kazuo. The art form is known to "resist fixity" and be difficult to define; notably, founder Hijikata Tatsumi viewed the formalisation of butoh with "distress". Common features of the art form include playful and grotesque imagery, taboo topics, extreme or absurd environments, and it is traditionally performed in white body makeup with slow hyper-controlled motion. However, with time butoh groups are increasingly being formed around the world, with their various aesthetic ideals and intentions.