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Plague and Locusts 2020: Johanna Yukiko Haneda

Introducing Yukiko Haneda, a singer and a performing artist, whos practice migrated toward video work during the pandemic, the medium which she is exploring now.

"Cubic Orange" from HEARTBEAT INK Performing Art, Theatre Improv Performance


E: Please introduce yourself, your practice, and interests, and how do you work in normal conditions.

YH: My name is Johanna Yukiko Haneda . I am always a performer, singer. In order to express my thoughts, I use voice, physical movement also visual effort.

As a singer, debut from Sony Records in 1988. Influenced by Japanese traditional Noh play and Portuguese FADO.


E: Now tell me how the above has changed in these conditions, so think about the work you make now, how you make it, what preoccupies you most now, when compared to your dominant interests and themes before all this.

YH: As a performer, always the most important thing is to perform. This has not been changed. Though, the more complicated circumstances make it difficult to choose the right words to express what I really feel. I start to use nonverbal vocalizing style. And now in this pandemic, start thinking of how to make more interesting than live performances led to make video work.


E: Are you finding these conditions very difficult? Or is it a welcome break to be able to concentrate solely on work, rather than do other, money-making things?

YH: Both. In the beginning, it was a welcome break. But we are now seeing more time to be in this lifestyle change. Honestly, sometimes, feel the difficulty, anxiety. But concentrating on creations keep me conscious.


E: What has changed since Lockdown? Has your concentration intensified or fallen away?

YH: Absolutely yes. First I was upbeat to make this rare circumstance as an advantage. But start feeling running inside the endless tunnel, searching for the exit, I changed the gear and slow down for the long-distance walking.


E: Is making work therapeutic or challenging nowadays? In difference to before.

YH: Yes. It is truly therapeutic for me. Challenging is to learn more tools, and figure out what I can do with what I have right now.


E: Do you think being artists makes you more resilient in these times? Meaning that those who have regular jobs, salaries etc. are now stuck at home with very uncertain futures ahead, as you always have.

YH: As an artist, we all have uncertainty in life, so the impact we got might be less. And luxury is the time we have to devote to our artwork. Grateful.


E: How do you think the role of the arts may change post-Lockdown?

YH: People might have more time to explore art. Hope they find some benefit in life to have art in their life.


E: Do you think this whole event will alter the way we engage with the world afterwards?

YH: Absolutely. Waiting to look back at this time in the future.

"Train Nocturne" from HEARTBEAT INK Performing Art, Theatre Improv Performance



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