Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial Award

"ODORU AKITA" founded the Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial Award to honor Tatsumi Hijikata, Akita's Intangible Cultural Heritage, and to nurture young talents who will inherit his art. The award is open to both domestic and overseas performers and is offered under a policy of free entry. 15 productions selected through video screening out of 219 entries from 16 countries plus one production invited from the last year's Seoul Choreography Festival (SCF) gathered in Akita at the first competition this year.

【Judgment Committee】

Head of the judgment committee Judgment committee members
Akaji Maro
Director of Dairakudakan,
Butoh dancer, director, and actor
Natsu Nakajima
Butoh dancer, director of the Butoh dance company "MUTEKI-SHA", and director of the handicap Butoh education program “KOKORO to KARADA”
Tatsuro Ishii
Dance critic, honorary professor at Keio University
Santa Yamakawa
"ODORU AKITA" Festival director

Ya-Ping Chen/Taiwan
Chairperson of the Graduate Institute of Dance Taipei National University of the Arts
Kwang-ryul Jang/Korea
Head of International Performing Arts Project(iPAP) Internationl Comic Dance Festival Artistic Director
Hosik Yu/Korea
Founder & Artistic Director of Designare Movement Artistic Director of NDA International Festival
Elianna Lilova/Bulgaria
ONE DANCE WEEK festival Director
Daniel Yeung/Hong Kong
Jeong-ho Nam/Korea
Choreographer, Professor Department of Choreography, School of Dance Korea National University of Arts
Hazel Gonzalez Araya/Costa Rica
Director of Cultural Extension Universitaria of Costa Rica
Takao Norikoshi/Japan
Writer, Dance critic
Jay Hirabayashi/Canada
Kuik Swee Boon/Singapore
T.H.E Dance Company Artistic Director & Principal Choreographer M1 CONTACT Contemporary Dance Festival Artistic Director
Elise Lin/Taiwan
Director of Artistic Planning at National Performing Arts Center-National Kaohsiung Center for the Arts (Weiwuying)

Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial Award finalist performance

The 1st Baku Ishii/Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial International Dance Festival “ODORU AKITA” which was held last year ended with a great success, having nine dance companies coming all the way from Korea, Taiwan, The United States, and Tokyo. Even during the main festival period between October 31 and November 6, a total of 3,000 audience members came to see the performances, and the number in the audience during the period starting from the opening reception held on June 3 exceeded 7,000. Continuing since last year, we have publicized this event throughout the world to attract performers.We will choose one program among the various performances that we consider to be the one who can best “create a unique expression beyond the concept of existing dance”, and they will be awarded the “Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial Award”. A meeting of the awards committee will be held after the performance of all programs have been completed, and an award ceremony will also be held.For the group that wins the Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial Award will receive the award certificate, a commemorative gift, and also a cash prize of 200 thousand yen.Apart from this award, there will also be an Audience Award, and Director Award selected by foreign guests.

Event date
October 26-28, 2017(Wednesday-Saturday)
Event time
26,27 18:30-, 28 15:00
Event venue
Keyaki Theater, Akita Prefectural Children's Hall
Admission fee and etc
Advance ticket 2,000yen (2,300yen on the day)
Three performances Free pass ticket 5,000yen
("Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial Award" Audience Award voting ticket included)

Danza Universitaria (Costa Rica)


Gustavo Hernández
Compañía Danza Universitaria
(Mainor Gutiérrez, Jimena Muñoz, Elián López, Edward Guerra, Verónica Monestel,Gloriana Retana, Iván Saballos, Evelyn Ureña)
Gustavo Hernández
Improvisation /Josué Berrocal, Meditation #1/ Casey Cangelosi.
Costumes and scenery
Danza Universitaria
Costume making-up
Rosi Santos
Catalina Fernández
Graphic design
Gustavo Hernández

The play revolves around the concept of sabotage understood as action to hinder, obstruct, distort, prevent a particular process or action. Investigates the power relations that revolve around this concept and translate it to movement, using as generator the game of cat (X-0).

Ruri Mitoh (Japan)



Ruri Mitoh
Tomoko Inamura
Yuta Kumachi
Akiyo Kushida
Lena Hashimoto

I put on my body. Tissues make up my body are kept being renewed, and they will vanish someday. ‘Matou’ also sounds like “willing to wait” in Japanese. ‘Sou-matou’ is a revolving lantern which has a horse drawn on the cover and when it spins the shadow of horse looks like it’s running. It is often used in an expression to describe a moment that many visions appear in one’s mind when people have a brush with death and past memories come and go randomly and quickly. ‘Mattou’ means “to complete.” I completed my life.

Hung-Chung Lai (Taiwan)


Hung-Chung Lai
Wei Cheng、Li-En Hsu
hung chance

In this duet, the female dancer dreams of a life of a bird and the male dancer symbolizes a supporter, a cage, a heart of mirror and a dream. In this work, the female dancer wears a special head piece called “Ling Zi”. In this duet, “Ling Zi” presents an image of a bird, an extension of inner emotions, a desire to escape from reality, as well as the passion to chase the dream. In real life, if we never take actions to achieve our dream, then dream will always be just a dream, like that weightless “Ling Zi”. If the dream is something worth fighting for, then we must go after the dream, take action, and do whatever it takes to make the dream come true.

Kuan Hsiang Liu (Taiwan)


Choreographer・Music Design
Kuan Hsiang Liu
Kuan Hsiang Liu, Wan Lun Yu
Light Design
Chia Ming Liu
Chun Ju Chang
Tour Manager
Shu Han Yang

No one can save Dad. No one can save Mom. What on earth are you doing? Craziness before dying, hallucinations at deathbed: I choreographed in order to appease the revenants. In the saddest of comedies, the dance interprets hallucinations of dying persons. I dig out all possibilities for dancing from my mom’s last words. This work uses a self-deprecating manner to describe how the choreographer transforms the experience into the dance of life and into an intriguing and meaningful contemporary dance.

Josh Martin (Canada)


Lighting Design
Won Kyoon Han
Lightning Bolt / Polmo Polpo
Rehearsal Direction
Lisa Gelley
Special Thanks
Lee Su-Feh, and Barbara Bourget

This solitary dance began as an investigation surrounding an idea that the body holds a separate memory bank. Muscle tissue, bones, tendons and organs all storing their own accounts of past events, actions and trauma, with this collected information not readily shared or easily accessed by the mind. In a constant effort to disconnect movement from thought, the dance is an attempt to externalize the inner moments of body recall, and an expansion of what gets churned up in the retrieval.

Dance company the but (Korea)


Jaebum Byun
Dance company the but
(Jaebum Byun, Sukmin Ji, Jongkeun Hoh, Moogan Ki, Wonyoung Kim)
Jaeduk Kim (Modern Table)

We laugh way too little, and we learned to make money but forgot how to live. Life has become long, but we have forgotten to put meaning of life to times. Time flies, but how restless and pathetic are we in that rapid waves of time flow. However, as mornimg comes after dawn... Life being beautiful is maybe finding a bright way in the complete darkness.

Kenji Shinohe (Japan)


Kenji Shinohe

Theme of piece is "symbolization of feelings". Based on my experiences I felt that human emotional expressions become more poor in the information society. On internet We can have neutral face even if we are happy or sad during a communication, or pretend an other emotion which we don’t feel in the present moment. But we send emoticons and symbols according to our own feelings. While doing so, all the infinite expressions and emotion of a human being become more poor and less complex. 【K(-A-)O】throw a question to you, how can we get back our own feelings?

Kyum Ahn, Gayoung Lee (Korea)


Kyum Ahn, Gayoung Lee
Eunyoung Kim

Our worn and old distance between you and me, who don’t recognize each other even we are closest person to each other.

Bongsu Kim (Korea)


Bong-su Kim

In Buddhism, it is said that agony is necessary condition of human life due to one's sensory organ. This agony comes from desire, anger, mindlessness. The piece [Moment] tries to describe the reality of human being that experiences various emotion and pain because of it.

Reisa Shimojima (Japan)

『Monkey in a diaper』

Reisa Shimojima(kedagoro)

Shinichiro Kurimoto says that a Human being is a monkey wearing extra underpants in "Monkeys in underwear - what kind of creature is human being ? ." Kurimoto explains an action of the Homo sapiens by replacing a sexual behavior, a law, morality, religion with expression, "the underwear". How am I, then? I still wear diapers. I take a diaper off just when I exchange it for a new one. But in fact, I think this to be comfortable. Am I a human being? A monkey? Or neither? I am dreaming of putting on the solemn underwear like a human being someday.

Tjimur Dance Theatre (Taiwan)

『As Four Step』

Artistic Director
Ljuzem Madiljin
Baru Madiljin
Tjimur Dance Theatre
Company Manger
Shu-Ting Chiu
Administrative Assistant
I-Hsuan, LI
light board operator
Yu-Chen LIN

As Four Step is based on the homonyms of the “four-step dance” of the Paiwan people for festivals. The seem-to-be body movements and rhythms shows the unique Paiwan contemporary body codes of the dance group, interpreting the cultural context through pure physical development, showing the unique Paiwan contemporary body codes of the dance group.

Su Shu (Taiwan)


Su Shu
Silver Yee , Lao Pui Lon, Su Shu
Lee Che-Yi

A self reflection on the current life situation, where we have no choice but to face it.

Kaho Kogure (Japan)

『MIMOSA -short version-』

Kaho Kogure

Translucent boiling points and dew points Past that blackhole there is a blue world overflowing with soft light Ears tuned to the space in between Irises reflecting the waves of light If I took each one of the ever-undulating cells and turned them into a Mimosa flower Could I shine a light upon this world?

Seoljin Kim (Korea)


Seoljin Kim

This is a story about traces of life that someone passing by left behind. Time flows through me and bursts into another flow of time. A quiet and soundless state explodes out of me. The flow of time cannot be stopped, but that’s what makes me who I am. It leaves behind only traces of life.


Endangered species
~Breeding room~

Ayane Nakagawa
Kanako Mathukuma, Kaede Takaya(Mr’Scot), Shinpei Nemoto(SUICHU MEGANE∞), Ayane Nakagawa
Music provided
Nagaaki Ishigaki

If I was an endangered species, I may be bred artificially by human beings. I'm here right now because my parents had me, their parents had them. In this modern society, homosexualty or birth control could be acceptable. Of course, those who can't have babies should be accepted.But then, why was I born? What's the purpose of my existence. Am I just a creature who is waiting for death if I don't give birth in this breeding room named Earth?




Here we are on the Earth in 1000 years. The world that human being become extinct by AI. Even though they become an Android, they can't repair their parts because there is still the gap between the rich and the poor in the sorrowful world. The poor can only feel their own self-esteem in the humans meeting in the suburb of DISCO. Tracing back a dim memory when they were humans...

The Results of "Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial Award” & “Guest Award”

【Tatsumi Hijikata Memorial Award】

Japan:Mitoh Ruri [Matou]

【Judgment Committee Special Award】

Korea:Seoljin Kim [Trace]

【Guests Award】

Bulgaria Elianna Lilova ▶Kenji Shinohe, Josh Martin
Canada Jay Hirabayashi ▶︎Jay Hirabayashi Tjimur Dance Theatre
Costa Rica Hazel Gonzalez Araya ▶︎Kaho Kogure, Seoljin Kim, Josh Martin
Hong Kong Daniel Yeung ▶︎Seoljin Kim
Korea Hosik Yu ▶︎Hung-Chung Lai, Kuan Hsiang Liu
Korea Kwang-ryul Jang, ▶︎Kenji Shinohe, Reisa Shimojima
Korea Jeong-ho Nam ▶︎Josh Martin
Singapore Kuik Swee Boon ▶︎Mitoh Ruri
Taiwan Elise Lin ▶︎Mitoh Ruri
Taiwan Ya-Ping Chen ▶︎Mitoh Ruri, Josh Martin
Hungary Batarita ▶︎Josh Martin

【Audience Award】

Taiwan Hung-Chung Lai [Birdy]