Yoshiko was born in Japan and has lived in Brazil since 1999. She teaches dance regularly at Instituto Dança Viva in Holambra, a small ex-Dutch settlement in São Paulo state, offering Circle Dance to various regular groups of adults, elderly, children and people with disabilities. Yoshiko and her colleagues have also danced with patients hospitalized at a nearby psychiatric hospital.
Yoshiko has been developing ways of making full use of the aspects of dance that affirm, soothe, harmonise, allow people to be fully present in their bodies, feelings and in the moment.
“I like to create a safe atmosphere for people to enjoy the simple tactile and heart-to-heart connection that dancing can offer. I witness that for some participants an extra quality becomes apparent which may be described as integrative or 'spiritual'. With respect to this, certain dances are followed by a brief silence. This can leave people with a deep sense of calm, while also feeling very alive and present.”
Yoshiko first trained as a Circle Dance teacher at Instituto Dança Viva in Holambra, then took ‘Theory and Practice’ with Christiana Menezes, and the International Training at TRIOM with Nanni Kloke. Further studies included courses with Lucia Cordeiro, Renata Ramos, Judy King, Stefan and Bethan Freedman (in Brazil), International Summer Week with Friedel Kloke-Eibl (Germany), and an ‘Intensive Training’ with Friedel and Saskia (Ireland).
“As well as teaching in Brazil I take these dances to people in my homeland, Japan, because I witness their power as a moving meditation, a path that brings well-being and happiness to my life and to others as they connect in the circle.”
Yoshiko founded the Japan Circle dance Association and has initiated and hosted courses in Japan with world celebrated guest teachers. She is a member of UNESCO’s International Dance Council.
You can download a copy pf Yoshiko's article entitled Dancing with People with Disabilities: