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Hyakki Yakou – A Night Walk of A Hundred Demons

September 22, 2013 | Commissions

September 2013 at Hastings Museum & Art Gallery as part of the Coastal Currents festival

“Conceived and performed by Yumino Seki, Aisa Boaa and Mai Nguyen Tri.  Lighting Jim Roseveare, Soundscape Nick Weekes and Costume Anoushka Athique.
HYAKKI YAKOU is a site-specific Butoh dance performance.  The piece was inspired by  the Durbar Hall at Hastings Museum & Art Gallery.

Hyakki Yakou literally translates to a night walk of a hundred demons. In 17th century Japan objects were believed to be given lives after nearly serving 100 years and the demons were the spirits of deserted objects.”

A perfect opportunity for sampling and wild dance focussed music which was a joy to work on. I mostly confined myself to my partner’s flat as a sound source but also miked up the wooden staircase in the Durbar hall during the performance.

I took some recordings of the rehearsals in the hall as well and a few during a normal day with people wandering around, school visits and so on. One important sample was an old recording of a clockwork musical box/bird that rang out “born free” over and over. I used some of the notes and rearranged them into a tune that runs through the piece.



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