Monday, February 21, 2011

Noh Sir, I Kabuki All Night Long

A performance I did on February 12. Even more than others, Finland has an appropriation culture. We borrow the outward elements of foreign arts and gradually turn them into unmistakeably Finnish expressions. The first steps in this process are often quite silly (you do not want to hear the early years of Finnish hip hop...), as the mismatch between form and contents is at its greatest and performers still attempt to do justice to the original.
Now that I have performed that painful part, I'm going to sit back and watch as Noh and Kabuki morph into genuinely Finnish 'karvalakki-kabuki' (= fur hat Kabuki) analogous to the infamous karvalakkiooppera of the 1970s and 80s, where you had a stage full of woodcutters and workers doing arias...


  1. Very cool performance! I agree that these appropriations can make for interesting results.

  2. Thank you! The hardest part was sewing the kimono. Typical of my hubris/stupidity that the first piece of clothing I make would have to be something big that everybody will see. Googled around for instructions, but decided to go my own way and cut it from a single piece of linen, 1.5x4 metres. To save on sewing.
    Looks a lot better than I feared, but clumsy to move in with those four drumsticks in the hem inviting me to stumble at every step. I don't think I'll branch out into fashion any time soon. :)