Sayu school teaches the traditional arts of Samouraï (Kenjyutsu, Iaïdo, Aïki, Nô).
Sayu is the name of a basic form of Noh where Maite (the dancer) turns first to the left, then right and again left. If this movement is correctly performed, the dancer can create a harmony between the centrifugal force (yang) and the centripetal force (yin). In this movement lies the essence of dance and martial arts.
Masato MatsuuraTrained in Noh theatre with Master Tetsunojyo KANZE VIII and was “Uchi Deshi “(live-in apprentice) from 1988 to 1992. Participated in many plays in different theatres throughout Japan, such as the National Noh theatre and particularly performances directed by Hideo KANZE.
Since 1992 Matsuura has studied modern western and Japanese theatre to explore diverse techniques, as well as continuing with classical Japanese theatre.
During 1992 he also trained in Karate, sword fighting Itto Ryu Kenjutsu, and Iaijutsu and modern Kendo. This led to deeper studies on other methods and techniques which do not damage the body.
In 2000 trained in sword fighting at Niten school in Tokyo,and Aiki jyujitsu (origin of Aikido) with Master Daittoryu Yoshimaru Keisetsu, and also Tai Chi in Tokyo. This combination of theatre and martial arts brings a deeper understanding of physical movement and corporal expression to enable more fluidity and a stronger physical dimension which is the base of traditional Japanese theatre bringing together, dance, music and weapons.
Based in Paris since 2006, Matsuura created the school SAYU and LES DEUX SPIRALES dojo in the same year and is currently teaching and performing throughout Europe, Africa and Asia. Workshops and master classes are provided for artists, such as, actors, dancers and musicians to help improve their techniques, corporal movement and vocal expressions.
Matsuura directs and performs regularly in modern and traditional plays as well as acting and voice narration for film and television.
The principle of the two spirals
The Water Book of the Gorin No Shô (The book of five rings written by Miyamoto Musashi ) states that the spirit of the Niten schoold is based on water. It refers to the fluidity of water, free of restrictions, but also a physical sensation: the human body is indeed made up to 70% water.
To achieve this spirit, we must first stop relying on external muscle strength and focus on inside the body, thus feeling the strong force which dominates the body: the gravity. We can then develop his conscience to fit this. The gravity force on the ground, which draws down, and the strong action that responds, are absorbed by the body and thus water inside vibrates to build a large internal force. This feeling is the foundation of our principle of movement: to dance, to use the sword, for martial techniques or simply to move, you can take a great energy from the earth. This energy runs through the body as a spiral, dividing left and right. In ancient times, the sword master that reached this state described it as sky, earth and man. By releasing the shoulders, leaving the self and going to heaven and earth, body and spirit are released.
The practice is accessible to everyone, because we do not strike the muscles of partners during practice. It is worth noting the importance of free body and mind to live in the modern world.
The classical western music learning relies on repetition of exercises. These are often realised in constraining positions, without searching for harmony between gesture and body. Then tensions accumulate resulting in pain or maybe pathologies, and most likely in limits. To push those limits and to accomplish the best that we can, it should realize a good time, and not just in theory, that harmony between our body, our sensitivity and our mind is essential. And it is only up us we exercise every day.
How doing that ?
Working with Masato Matsuura will give us precious clues to such question. Noh master, sword master and other martial arts master, he addresses these disciplines as an artist. He regularly works with musicians, leading them to a more precise awareness of body parts involved in their practice.
A variety of basic exercises martial arts, tai chi and qi gong allow us to make more flexible and fluid our movements, to balance postures by focusing on our bearing points and on body axis. We will also be able to store our energy for more precision and velocity, releasing internal movements and circulation of non-muscular energy (gravity, breathing, movement of liquids…)
During twentiest century, western theatre involving, searching for its identity beyond historical stereotypes, had drown from eastern traditions, fortunately preserved. In this context, Noh theater is an invaluable source of learning because its skinning is based on an acute awareness of the real value of each gesture, every look, every sound, every direction. Obviously, such a teaching takes sens if it is lived through a concrete experiment, subtly guided otherwise it could be result in external use of knowledge deprived of its deep sense resulting from long years of ruthless exercises, beyond words.
Through study of fundamental forms of Noh theatre and related techniques like sword, Masato Matsuura offers us to discover and develop a more efficient body use : how building equilibrium, how moving, how appropriating space, how loading a gesture or an entry into a theater stage.
A choice of essential martial arts exercises, of Tai Chi and Qigong will allow us to fluidify our body and to release the internal movements inside. This internal movements are especially responsible for giving intensity to our attitude.
Someone interested by traditional martial arts knows that master succeed each, creating his own school, enriching with his own techniques and with his own style resulting from his experiments, from his searching, and from an ancestral knowledge.
In modern times, schools choosed to establish a nomenclature defined techniques that allowed it to shine and to democratize.
However, even well formalized, the nomenclature can not replace traditional teaching that is direct, and beyond words. Masato Matsuura, through technical forms of aikijujutsu and sword disciplines, offers us to make a internal research during techniques of martial arts , enables us to improve equilibrium and fluidity, and to release body energy by traditionnal exercises from Tai Chi, Qi Gong and Noh.