Synopses & Reviews
Dancing Into Darkness is Sondra Horton Fraleigh's chronological diary of her deepening understanding of and appreciation for this art form, as she moves from a position of aesthetic response as an audience member to that of assimilation as a student. As a student of Zen and butoh, Fraleigh witnesses her own artistic and personal transformation through essays, poems, interviews, and reflections spanning twelve years of study, much of it in Japan. Numerous performance photographs and original calligraphy by Fraleigh's Zen teacher Shodo Akane illuminate her words.
The pieces of Dancing Into Darkness cross boundaries, just as butoh anticipates a growing global amalgamation. "Butoh is not an aesthetic movement grafted onto Western dance, " Fraleigh concludes, "and Western dance may be more Eastern than we have been able to see. "
“Should inspire anyone interested in the active feminine voice...It has a niche beyond the dancer-reader, to those drawn to Japan, to cultural anthropology, and to cross-culturalism.”
—Janice LaPointe-Crump,Texas Woman's University
“Through examining the ‘other,’ one learns about one’s own culture, values, and aesthetics. . . Sondra’s book allows us to do this, because of her subject, remarkable insights, and captivating writing style.”
—Joan Laage, Artistic Director of Dappin' Butoh
About the Author
Sondra Horton Fraleigh chairs the Department of Dance at the State University of New York, Brockport. She is the author of Dance and the Lived Body and co-editor (with Penelope Hanstein) of Researching Dance: Evolving Modes of Inquiry. Her articles have been published in texts on dance and movement, philosophy, and cognitive development. She has been a guest teacher of dance and somatic therapy in America, Japan, England, and Norway. She has served as president of the Congress of Research in Dance and is a Faculty Exchange Scholar for the State University of New York. Her innovative choreography has been seen on tour in America, Germany, and Japan, where she has also been a visiting scholar at several universities.