Beyond Ballet,
Beyond Hip-Hop

May 10 & May 11, 2024
past event image
Performing Arts past event

Contemporary Dance | North American Premiere

Friday, May 10, 7:30 pm—Followed by an artist Q&A
Saturday, May 11, 7:30 pm

The Dying Swan & Its Cause of Death
Performed by Hana Sakai, Direction/text by Toshiki Okada
in Japanese with English supertitles

Playbill (PDF) →

Choreography by Moto Takahashi

In The Dying Swan & Its Cause of Death, one of Japan’s leading prima ballerinas, Hana Sakai, performs her graceful dance of the timeless Western classic ballet to Saint-Saëns’ famous music. Immediately after, Sakai starts trudging, wobbling and speaking aloud about why she, the swan, had to die–a hilarious take by visionary director/playwright Toshiki Okada that delves into environmental issues. The other piece in this double bill, Encounter, is performed by the all-woman dance group MWMW, led by Moto Takahashi. They challenge gender norms with their stunning hip-hop techniques and ensemble movements. This program will be accompanied by Udai Shika on cello. Don’t miss your chance to see these genre-defying works that are breaking new ground in Japan’s dance scene!

Toshiki Okada
Hana Sakai
Moto Takahashi

Image: Encounter © Kazuyuki Matsumoto; Toshiki Okada © Kikuko Usuyama; Hana Sakai © Tomohide Ikeya.

Beyond Ballet, Beyond Hip-Hop is supported by the Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan through the Japan Arts Council, Doug and Teresa Peterson, and The Harkness Foundation for Dance.

2023-24 Performing Arts Season Support

The season is made possible, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Major support is generously provided by Doug and Teresa Peterson; Howard Gilman Foundation; and Hisamitsu America, Inc. Endowment support is provided by the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Endowment Fund, The John and Miyoko Davey Endowment Fund, and the Endowment for the Performing Arts, established with a leadership gift from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.

Additional support is provided by The Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, Richard and Momona Royce, Nancy and Joe Walker, Dr. and Mrs. Carl F. Taeusch II, Dr. Jeanette C. Takamura, Estate of Alan M. Suhonen, and Friends of the Performing Arts. All Nippon Airways Co., Ltd. is the official airline of the Japan Society Performing Arts Program. Yamaha is the official piano provider of Japan Society.

Japan Society programs are made possible by leadership support from Booth Ferris Foundation and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.

  • May 10, 2024 May 11, 2024
  • 7:30 pm
  • In-Person Event
  • Reserved Tickets
  • $40 Nonmembers
  • $32 Members
  • $32 Person with Disability

There is an additional $2.00 service charge for all non-member ticket types purchased during Japan Society Performing Arts’ 2023-24 Season.