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Jean Laurent Sasportes in Japan from 1986 till now.


 First Steps in Japan

My first visit to Japan was in 1986 with the Tanztheater Pina Bausch. This was also the first tour of the Tanztheatre in this country. We performed the piece « Kontakthof». Without really knowing why, I was all ready, since my youth, very interested in the Japanese culture. Maybe because, as some of my Japanese friends tell, once in my precedent life I was myself a Japanese..
So, it is with a very excited mood that I did put my first step on the Japanese soil. It did not take long before I felt strongly in love with this country.
Since then, I regularly performed as soloist member, with the Tanztheatre Pina Bausch in Japan from 1986 till 2010.

M. and Mrs. Ito and the Session House

But it is only in 1998 that I started to propose my teaching and choreographic work in this country.
In 1998 I had the pleasure to meet Mr. Takashi Ito (manager of the Session House Studio and co-director of the dance company « Mademoiselle Cinema »). M. Ito and his wife Naoko Ito (co-director and choreographer of the company), proposed me to teach a summer workshop for the students of their school « The Session House » and for the dancers of their company named « Mademoiselle Cinema ».
So since 1999 till now I have been working, at least once a year, as teacher, dancer and choreographer in collaboration with the Session House and the dance company « Mademoiselle Cinema ». I became head master of the Session House Summer Academy and many choreographies have been produce through those workshops.
More detailed information about this work can found if you click on the following links:
  - Choreography for the student of the Session House.
  - Dancing with Mademoiselle Cinema

Meeting M. Saitoh Tetsu and the beginning of a great collaboration work

I met the musician and composer Tetsu Saitoh in 2004. I am thankful to mr. Takashi Ito for organising this meeting. Takashi Ito knew that, since Peter Kowald.s death, I was looking for a musician to perform improvisation in Japan. So Mr. Ito, thanks to his formal profession as journalist  for Jazz music for the NHK. Japanese television, was very well inform about the music improvisation scene in Tokyo. Also, because he knew well Peter Kowald and his music, Takashi had the beautiful idea that Tetsu and I could get along in improvisation quite well.

The meeting happened in the Session House and Tetsu and I spoke almost no words except: «  nice to meet you, shall we try? »..
After 20 minutes of  improvisation, the thing was clear and we stopped. Tetsu, Takashi and myself, smiled to each other, because we felt that words were not necessary.

We started our collaboration work with a tour through Japan organised by Tetsu in 2006.
Since 2006, this collaboration work has been always developing more and more. Tetsu was not only a great person, a great musician and composer, he had also an incredible amount of friends artist all through Japan, and he was very active in bringing people to meet each other.
So through M. Saitoh  I could meet and perform with a very large amount of Japanese artists and many cultural exchanges between Japan and Europe could be realised. Through M. Saitoh I had also the great pleasure to perform in many towns of Japan and discover the beauty of this country and the wonderful hospitality of the Japanese folk.

All through the years, since 2006, the constant growing of the amount of European and Japanese artists which have been put in contact with one another through our meeting became important enough to allow us to consider that we became a little cultural platform for artist between Europe and Japan. Each of those contacts developed to a more extended collaboration work and many events in many countries could have been created out of this collaboration.
This collaboration work continues very actively and M. Saitoh and myself hope to be able in the next future to extend our cultural exchange collaboration work to more European and Japanese artists.
More detailed information about this collaboration work is to find through this link:

  - Dancing with Tetsu Saitoh
  - Choreography for Dance-theatre, « Mein Schloss »
  - Choreography for dance-theatre, Looking for Kenji 1»
  - Choreography for dance-theatre, Looking for Kenji 2»
  - Dancing with Yuji Kobayashi

The Japanese dancer Yahagi Ryotaru and the « Izuruba Studio »

One of the special events which came out of my collaboration Tetsu is the meeting with the dancer Yahagi Ryotaru. In ????  Tetsu introduced me to the dancer Yahagi Ryotaru and his family.
The Yahagi family lives in a beautiful house in Tokyo, and the whole ground-floor of this house is dedicated to dance, music and art performances.

So, Tetsu, Ryotaro and I, had a improvisation performance together at the performing place « Izuruba ». From this time I became one of Ryotaru’s dance adviser and teacher.
In 2010, with the authorisation of Noro Sensei (founder of the Kinomichi in France), I started to propose my Kinomichi teaching in the Izuruba Studio.I also started to propose my class of Body work and Movement consciousness named Jansan-no-Taiso
From this time I proposed Kinomichi and Jansan-no-Taiso workshops at least once a year till now. A group of regular students developed.
For next future,I have the project to organise a big workshop meeting between my student group of Wuppertal and my student group of Izuruba. This first big meeting and cultural exchange will first take place in Izuruba Studio and will be, one year later, proposed to my Japanese students in Wuppertal.
Both groups of students are composed of very different kind of people and it is from my point of view a perfect base for a very rich and intensive cultural exchange.


Adjoint Professor at the Tokyo Institut of Technology.

n 2008 Professor Noboru Hidano and Professor Roger Pulvers took contact with me to propose me to be part of the CSWC (Center for Studies of World Civilisations) as adjoint professor.
Professor Noboru Hidano  is professor of Economic, and Roger Pulvers professor for English language; both at the famous Tokyo Institut of Technology.
The goal of the CSWC was explained to me from Pr. Hidano in this words: « The students who study in this Institut will become highly scaled engineers and scientists. They will be people who will get important responsibilities in our Japanese Society. So we think that it is important that those students get a chance to develop their sensibility and humanity. Art is a very strong field for this goal, so this is why we created this Institute inside of our University, and why we invite important artist from Japan and aboard ».

My field was « Dance and Stage Performing Art ». I worked at this project from 2008 to 2011. 
Some of my students are still in contact with me, and I had the pleasure to receive three of them during their visit to Europe.
It is out of my collaboration work with Professor Roger Pulvers that, in year 2011, came out the realisation of the dance-theatre piece titled « Looking for Kenji ». Professor Roger Pulvers  has been the first translator to translate Mr. Miyazawa poems in english. They knew each other.
This piece is a work out of some poetry of Miyazawa Kenji.. Professor Roger Pulvers told me that, before he will take his pension from the University, he had the desire to see a dance-theatre work about some of Kenji Miyazawa poems. So I work on this project with the students of the university, and the piece « Looking for Kenji » came out of this work. At this time, I was performing myself as dancer in the piece, and Tetsu Saitoh played the music together with the students.
It is important to tell that this was the year when Japan had to hardly suffer from the heavy earthquake, very strong tsunami, and on top of it the nuclear plant disaster. Because of the insecure situation, i had to delay my travel to Japan, and I could start the work one month after this horrible event. There are somehow strong connection between Kenji and the situation in which Japan was at this time, and this work took a very unexpected meaning.
One year later, in 2012, I created a second version of « Looking for Kenji », this time with professional dancers, new scenes and dances, and for the music, with Naoki Kita who joined Tetsu

You can read more about « Looking for Kenji » if you click on this link:
  - Choreography for dance-theatre, Looking for Kenji 1»
  - Choreography for dance-theatre, Looking for Kenji 2»

The egg farm  in Saitama

2010 - APRIL - Thursday 5th. Tokyo - I arrived from Seoul on March 23rd. and I am staying at my very good friend Tetsu Saitoh’s house in Hatagaya. Last week we had a performance at «Egg Farm» in Saitama, and this place is related to such interesting and beautifull people that I have to tell you about it. As its name tells, the «Egg Farm» is a real egg farm which belongs to Mr. and Mrs Saitoh. What is particuliar to this place, is that Mrs Saitoh has such a great interest in improvisation music and free jazz, that she had a performance theatre named «Egg Farm» build in her house. «Egg Farm» propose an astonishing interesting concert and performance programme to a public which comes even from Tokyo. Because «Egg Farm» is quite away from any railway station, Mrs. Saitoh organise a transport service which pick up the spectators at the station and will bring them back once the concert is over. With the performance ticket you can get a meal at Egg Farm restaurant iif you wish.
The performance room is a beautifull wood made room which has a very warm atmosphere, it can receive a maximum of about one hundred people.
Many international wellknown musician as, Joelle Léandre, Steve Lacy, Louis Clavis, performed at Egg Farm.
I never heard about any place like this in Europe, allthrough I am sure that it exists a couple (if you know any, please let me know about it)  and I wish that more farmers could have such kind of cultural interest and create such great performing places as «Egg Farm». domo aligato Madame Saitoh !!

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