Butoh UK

Weekly Classes 2020


due to coronovirus remaining 2 classes are now cancelled.


NEW TIME: Tuesdays 6.30pm to 8.30pm


Taught by Marie-Gabrielle Rotie and Nick Parkin



Poplar Union

2 Cotall Street



E14 6TL




Transport: Limehouse (DLR)

Bow, or Bromley by Bow (district line) or Mile End (central) undergrounds are all in various walking distances.


Cost of Classes: 100 pounds advance booking for 10 weeks.

Or 12 pounds per drop in class. Cash or pay by Paypal


Butoh is an act of transformation, a process by which the performer searches for a state of becoming.

The classes offer weekly ‘themes’ such as ‘Image’, ‘Becoming Animal’, ‘Gravity’, ‘Character’  ‘ Butoh and Somatics’, ‘Butoh and Costume’ which exist as mini-units so that students can drop in to classes and not feel that they missing something from a previous week. However, to get the most from these classes it is strongly recommended to take the whole course. This work builds up a strong connectivity with the group, and regular attendance helps everyone to strengthen their dance.


Students who attend come from a wide range of ages and experience, from age 19 to 80 plus, and beginners are very welcome.  We do not teach a style but rather aim to communicate the essential philosophy of butoh that asks that everyone finds their own dance. We do teach the different approaches to butoh from the lineages of Hijikata and Ohno, but focus more on improvisation methods, arising from teaching essential core languages in Butoh such as the walk, approaches to time, working with images, working with gravity and the materiality of the body and so on. Our teachers all have their own lines of expertise and offer different perspectives on the question of how to teach Butoh. It is this open-mindedness, that students over the years have appreciated. Marie-Gabrielle, together with her guest teachers, has now run these weekly classes for over 20 years and the demand is still strong, and is testimony to the ‘family’ of students that return year after year, and to the creation of a safe and supportive environment for students to find their own dance.




Weekly Classes Spring 2020



Biographies of Teachers and Class Approach.



Marie-Gabrielle Rotie (Butoh and Post Butoh)


She  encountered Butoh in 1991 and since then has studied and collaborated with numerous Butoh masters, and most closely with the late Ko Murobushi. Her teaching is informed by her own practice as a succesful artist/ choreographer, carving her own aesthetic, emerging from, but quite distinct from the category of 'butoh'. Her approach aims to balance spirit and form, choreography and improvsation, the lineages of Hijikata and Ohno, and to communicate both the rigour or Butoh, but also allow space for inclusivity and for the creative journey and personal discovery of each participant. She does not therefore teach a 'style,' but a philosophical approach manifesting through the body. Her teaching focuses on the craft of 'making' in the moment and draws upon her interest in distillation, playing with time, transformation, and states of 'becoming'.  




Nick Parkin (Butoh and Martial Arts and working with sound and with nature)


Nick has studied Butoh and movement since the 1980's and has then gone on to travel through careers as both a dancer, musician and composer. He studied intitially with Sankai Juku training in Paris, and then Noh with Yoshi Oida and Akira Matsu. Since 1993 he has studied Martial Arts in depth as a  Senior student with Lam Kam Chuen in Zhan Zhuang Chi Kung and a member of Master Lam’s ‘Da Cheung Chuan Zhan Zhuang’ Chi Kung Research Group UK.and he also studied Pakua Chang with Dr Xie Peiqi and ongoing training in the method of Park Bok Nam. this informs his approach to fusing Butoh with concerns around internal states, Chi and energy. He also focuses on movement in relation to sound, and movement drawing upon his long practice of working in the landscape.