Cibo Matto’s Yuka C. Honda Melds Movement with Music in Upcoming Limbs

By Tony Sokol

Whether you’re clapping, stomping, picking or strumming, Yuka C. Honda’s upcoming Limbs is the a place where heads, hands and feet all meet. The former taller half of Cibo Matto seamlessly sound, rhythm, and movement in her new work, which premieres at National Sawdust on 80 North 6th Street, Brooklyn, New York 11249 on May 28. Doors open at 3:30 p.m. It will cost you $29 if you reserve tickets now. If you wait, it will cost you $34 at the door.
Yuka C. Honda is a Japanese composer/musician and producer residing in New York City,” reads the Facebook announcement.

She is best known for the band Cibo Matto, which she co-founded with Miho Hatori in 1994 and in which Honda created a unique one-man band sound by triggering samples ‘live’. Honda released three solo albums (on the Tzadik label) and has produced recordings by Sean Lennon, Martha Wainwright, YOKO ONO PLASTIC ONO BAND and Cibo Matto. She has recorded and performed with a wide range of musicians such as Yoko Ono, Bernie Worrell, Esperanza Spalding, Marc Ribot, Laurie Anderson, Sean Lennon, Yoshimi (of The Boredoms), Nels Cline, Zeena Parkins, Susie Ibarra, Kimbra, Thomas Bartlett and Trixie Whitley among others.

“Composer/Percussionist Susie Ibarra creates live and immersive music that explores rhythm, indigenous practices and interaction with cities and the natural world. Ibarra is a Yamaha, Paiste and Vic Firth Drum Artist. She is a 2014 TEDSenior Fellow. Ibarra is premiering an album recorded with DreamTime Ensemble on Decibel Collective in 2017. Titled Perception, it is a collection of pieces around the idea of finding unfixed meaning in sensory experiences and interaction in ones environment.

Ibarra has performed with luminaries such as Pauline Oliveros, NEA heritage artist Danongan Kalanduyan, John Zorn, Wadada Leo Smith, Dave Douglas, Tania Léon, Ikue Mori, Yusef Komunyakaa, Yuka Honda, Sylvie Courvoisier, Trisha Brown, Derek Bailey, Marc Ribot, Jennifer Choi, Craig Taborn, Mali singer songwriter Mamadou Kelley and Hamdcha Sufi Group of Fez, Morocco.

Her work includes Musical Water Routes in the Medina of Fez, a music and river route mobile app walk in collaboration with architect Aziza Chaouni released at the 2016 Sacred Music Festival of Fez; Mirrors and Water, a composition and sonic installation commissioned for Ai Wei Wei’s Circle of Animals/Zodiac Signs at the sculpture trail of the National Museum of Wildlife Art, Jackson, Wyoming in 2015; Digital Sanctuaries, a modular music app walk that remaps cities with sanctuaries of music and engages with historical and cultural sites within a city with music composed by Electric Kulintang, commissioned by Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and City of Asylum Pittsburgh; Circadian Rhythms, commissioned for Earth Day 2013 at Rensselaer RPI EMPAC inspired by endogenous rhythms for 80 percussionists and 8.1 surround sound of Macaulay Library recordings; The City, a Radio Radiance commission for Young Peoples Chorus of NYC; We Float, a 2014 commission by Ecstatic Music Festival with singer songwriter Mirah, a sonic retelling of space explorations; The Cotabato Sessions, a digital music film and album that captures one family legacy of gong-chime kulintang music in Mindanao, Philippines.

In 2016 Ibarra was a convener at a winter school in Kyoto, Japan titled Mapping the Aesthetics of Urban Life in Asia, A dialogue with the arts. She is a Faculty member at Bennington College where she teaches Performance, Percussion, and at the Center for Advancement of Public Action. Her teaching at the Center focuses on her work in urban and rural revitalization with the arts, art intervention and advocacy for human rights extended equally to women and girls.

Kazu Kumagai is the one and only tap dancer, who received a 2016 Bessie Award for “Outstanding Performance”; 2014 The Flo-Bert Award which honors “outstanding figures in the field of tap dance” from the N.Y. committee to celebrate National Tap Dance Day.

Mentored by Gregory Hines, Andrew Nemr is considered one of the most diverse tap dance artists today. An international performer, choreographer, educator and speaker, Andrew’s work explores tap dance as a vehicle for storytelling and community building. He has played with Grammy Award winning musicians across multiple genres, founded and directed the tap dance company Cats Paying Dues, and co-founded the Tap Legacy™ Foundation, Inc. (along with Hines).

“A masterly tapper” (New York Times), Nemr’s work has been recognized with a TED Fellowship, acceptance into the SupporTED Collaboratorium, grants from the National Endowment for the Arts American Masterpieces: Dance Initiative and the CUNY Dance Initiative, a FloBert Award for Tap Dance Excellence, and residencies with Quarterly Arts Soiree at Webster Hall, BRICLab, More Art’s Engaging Artists program, Surel’s Place, and the TED Residency. Nemr is recorded on the Grammy nominated recording Itsbynne Reelby Dave Eggar, the DVD Documentary and companion album Tuesdays at Mona’s by Mona’s Hot Four, and narrates the DanceTime Publications DVD, Tap Dance History: From Vaudeville to Film. An avid public speaker, Nemr now uses the story of his journey and the craft of tap dance to speak on ideas of identity, community, faith, and love.”

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