Yamamoto | A professional dancer, choreographer, mime, clown,
Silent Storyteller and visual artist (sculpture and mixed-media
painting), Noriko was born in Mito City and grew up in Tokyo,
Noriko studied ballet, jazz
dance and modern dance from an early age, and later taught these
dance forms for more than 20 years at a number of dance studios
in Tokyo. She danced with Tokyo's Ballet Balloon as principal
dancer for six years and choreographed works for a myriad of
professional theatre and dance companies during her time in Japan.
Among her other dance accomplishments, Noriko was commissioned
by Toshiba to create a jazz dance instruction tape.
Under the tutelage of Japan's
renowned mime artist, Mamako Yoneyama, Noriko flourished in her
four-year mime apprenticeship. Later on, Noriko taught mime and
dance at various theatre schools in Tokyo, and eventually ran
her own mime and dance studio for eight years before moving to
Toronto. Noriko founded Shamingu Theatre Company, a physical
theatre company that showcased its works at theatres in Tokyo,
including the venerable Jean Jean Theatre.
In Japan, Noriko did promotional
work for both small and large corporations appearing in many
television specials, commercials, concerts and at both public
and private events. She even has the distinction of being captured
on hologram and displayed in a Tokyo museum (Fukagawa Edo Shiryokan
She performed throughout Japan
as a dancer, choreographer, mime, clown and actor (physical theatre).
International credits include Aberdeen Youth Festival, Rome Drama
Festival, Palermo Drama Festival and London's Covent Garden.
moving to Canada with little knowledge of the English language,
Noriko developed a way to tell stories without the use of spoken
words. Here the concept of Silent Storytelling emerged. Playing
multiple roles and using a small and portable stage set and a
few props, Noriko uses mime and dance, choreographed to music,
to tell stories in a unique and beautiful way. There are no language
barriers, so the magic of stories can be appreciated by all.
Her Silent Storytelling repertoire
includes her own stories, but for the most part, well known tales
and stories written both by Japanese and non-Japanese authors
Her career as a Silent Storyteller
has taken her into countless schools and libraries across Ontario,
and to storytelling festivals and events across Canada and Japan.
She can also be seen 'telling' at daycares, senior's homes, museums
Noriko has been a member of
Storytelling Toronto since 1996 and is most appreciative of this
professional storytelling group's receptiveness towards Silent
A few examples of her Toronto
performance career as a Silent Storyteller, mime and clown include
the CNE, Ontario Place, First Night Toronto, Children's Own Museum,
Guelph Spring Festival, Lieutenant Governor's Levees at Queen's
Park, Ed Mirvish's birthday party, National Ballet of Canada,
City TV's Breakfast Television, Canadian Ethnic Journalists Awards
Ceremony, McMichael Art Gallery, Ryerson University, University
of Waterloo, Hospital for Sick Children, National Aboriginal
Day, Le Petit Chaperone Rouge Daycare, Japan Foundation, Hiroshima
Peace Day at Nathan Phillip Square and numerous other festivals,
corporate and community events, private kids and adult parties.
For more information about
Noriko Yamamoto, please visit her performance website
or her visual arts website.
The project was made
possible with the support of the
of Canadian Heritage through the Canadian Culture Online Strategy
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