Kaori Ito (JP)

I dance because I do not trust words

2400 HUF / Student: 1900 HUF
Trafó Passes are accepted

family, remembering, heritage

This project will deal with the relationship between a father and daughter. I want to 
recreate a meeting with my father, to retrieve something which is lost. A personal and artistic meeting, the meeting of two people separated by thousands of miles and by a sort of cultural distance.

Kaori Ito was born in Japan, she has been dancing since her young age. At age 20, she moves to New York, she is continuing her studies there and later in Tokyo. She is dancing with Philippe Découflé, James Thierrée, Angelin Preljocaj, and even Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui before coming to her own choreographic work: I dance because I do not trust words.

With: Kaori Ito (daughter) and Hiroshi Ito (father)

Text, Staging and choreography: Kaori Ito

Choreography assistant: Gabriel Wong

Playwriting and support: Julien Mages

Stage design: Hiroshi Ito

Lighting: Arno Veyrat

Music : Joan Cambon

Design of masks and outside view: Erhard Stiefel

Costumes : Duc Siegenthaler (Haute École d'Art et de Design de Genève)

Production : Améla Alihodzic (Playtime)

Touring : Sarah Benoliel / Administration Pierre-André Kranz

In March 2011, the year of the Tsunami, after ten years of being away, I saw my old room

again at my parents’ house in Tokyo. It has not changed since I was in my twenties. My

parents have always left it the same. Then, I saw the photos of me in the living room. This

made me feel like a kind of dead person in the house. It was as if, since I left, they kept my

belongings intact to preserve the daughter they had before, when I was still in Japan, it

was as if time had stopped since my departure. 

For a girl, the father represents both authority and a person to be overcome. I have

always tried to please my father. So I have worked my whole life to make him happy with

me. As a young girl, he told me what I should do. Before, I would respectfully listen to his

artistic advice; my father is a sculptor in Japan. He was someone I admired, someone who

held a truth, and I meticulously followed what he told me to do.

Sometimes his comments were very profound, like this one: “you needn’t move within

the space, but make space be moved by your dance”. 

My father always wanted to maintain his authority over me, perhaps so that I remain his

daughter. Now that I’m away, paradoxically I realise that I feel closer to him artistically,

but far away emotionally. Today I realise that it is he who strives to please me. Now he

respects me as a dancer. He recognises me as a professional and that is why he wants to

dance with me.


When I return to Japan, my father still wanted to do ballroom dancing with me. It always

bothered me, but now I’m ready to dance with him in public.

I would like to see him on stage again.

May the space be moved by the reunion of our blood kin bodies, his shaped by sculpture

and mine by dance.


The distance requires us to show our love in different, more subtle ways. In Japan, we do

not show our feelings. When a family is reunited in the same country, the intimacy is

created by seeing and sharing things together, yet whilst living on the other side of the

world, we have the feeling of becoming a stranger to one’s own family, and we lose the

concrete relationship. 

Perhaps the purpose of this show is the dance that we’ll do together, once said what can

be said by words. Because in Japan, we do not trust words.

Kaori Ito

Our ticket office is closed until 22 August.:
  • Main hall performance days: 5 pm - 10 pm
  • studio and club performance days: 5 pm - 8:30 pm
  • other days: 5pm - 8 pm
Trafó Gallery opening hours:
  • Until September 2024 Trafó Gallery is closed for a summer break.
  • -
  • -

  • The Trafó Kortárs Művészetek Háza Nonprofit Kft. works in the maintance of Budapest Főváros Önkormányzata.

Media partners

Cooperative partners