Ayako Kato offers dance audiences experiences which can give vitality to humanity. By informing the vulnerable, sensitive and elusive state of human beings, the company reevaluates the fundamental beauty of our ephemeral being, its intrinsic value and the strength. The company strives to respond to the contemporary society and searches the creative apparatus that increases social change through dance.
Ayako believes that art is the tool to balance human lives between secular/conventional life and sacred/spiritual life. Art is the reminder to remember humans are a fractal part of nature and nature as themselves. Knowing who we are helps us, humans, to stay humble and in harmony. Fostering this notion through dance, the company’s purpose of creation is to convey the value of ephemeral as well as eternal beauty of being as it is.
Often fused with western music/sounds, particularly J.S. Bach, free jazz, experimental music and improvisation, Kato’s choreography, which looks simple, yet multilayered in meanings, encourage active participation from audiences through their imagination, memories and experiences.
Kato considers improvisation over the concept of yin-yang in Taoism: composition and improvisation cannot exist in a vacuum, but rather include the other aspect in different degrees in the entity of a single dance work. In other words, when improvisation matures, it seeks out the form of composition and when composition matures, it seeks out the form of improvisation. Butoh master Kazuo Ohno observed that one must: “improvise the same thing one hundred times, and then you start to see the truth in the movement.” This means, if you improvise about “flower,” after one hundred times of improvisation, you start to see something that can be called the law of nature or the law of the movement. And that is recognized as the essence of composition. When Kato performs and creates a dance work, she keeps seeking to encounter these absolute moments of being, and that’s how she copes with and balance improvisation (spiritual order) and composition (the law of nature/the movement) in her dance work. When the balance is achieved, Kato believes that liberation emerges.