YOSHIKO CHUMA is the artistic director of the School of Hardknocks. She has created more than 60 full-length performance works for theatres and site-specific venues with her company and as commissioned works throughout the world. The School of Hard Knocks, which takes its name from the American idiom meaning to learn things the hard way, was the title of the company’s first production, for which Chuma collaborated with Alvin at the 1980 Venice Biennale. Chuma has also collaborated with Christian Marclay throughout 1979-1984. Chuma was commissioned by Tan Dun to direct and choreograph his first opera “Nine Songs” in 1989. Chuma has since collaborated with musicians/composers such as Lenny Pickett, Nona Hendrix, Mark Bennett and Marc Ribot, Chuma has collaborated with William Parker since the first Vision Festival 18 years ago, where Chuma was a special guest choreographer.
“In my life I’ve met and worked with many jazz musicians. I discovered “So What” by Miles Davis when I was a student during the Vietnam War, and the demonstrations that I took part in. I thought that music might help. Later I discovered Thelonious Monk. Matthew Shipp’s hands on the piano brought back all of these memories. “A Piano” is an illustration of my memory of jazz.”– Yoshiko Chuma
The Vision Festival is the world's premier showcase of Free Jazz music, dance, poetry, and visual art.