Since 1992 Ruud van Ginkel (Aikidotrainer & choreographer) and Hélène Meyer (artistic leader & director) worked together in theatregroup Coyote, a semi-professional artistic collective in the Netherlands. They developed a physical style of acting based on moving principles of Aikido and created a style in staging and acting in mixing Japanese and European elements. Theatregroup Coyote was invited to several national and international theatrefestivals to perform and to give acting workshops.
Mr. Hiroshi Koizumi, president of IATA Asian Regional Centre, wrote in his letter of congratulations at the 10th anniversary of theatregroup Coyote: “I never forget the striking deep impression in my mind when I saw the performance by Coyote ‘Macbeth’ at the Toyama International Theatre Festival in 1996. Japanese martial art was adopted dexterously in ‘Macbeth’, and Japanese elements with the deformed armours and costumes were made the best use of in the classical European drama. We saw a great fusion between the European and Japanese style realized on stage”.
Theatregroup Coyote has a personal relationship with Aikodo Master Mr. Katsuyuki Shimamoto of Akido Toyonaka Shosenji Dojo in Osaka, Japan. We visited his yearly training in the Netherlands; observed several of his trainings in Shosenji Dojo: he gave some workshops to the actors of Coyote in the Netherlands and visited our performances in Japan. Ruud & Hélène performed 2 theatreplays specially made for the 40th & 50th celebration of Shosenji Dojo: Dehima (2004) and Water, Wind, Fire, Earth en Emptyness (2012).
Mr. Katsujuki wrote in a letter of recommendation for theatregroup Coyote: “Shimamoto sensei would like to express the engagement between Shosenji Dojo and Coyote by a performance during the festival. The theatrical work of Coyote expresses the artistic value of Aikido in acting. Shimamoto sensei has followed the performances of Coyote and worked several times with the group from 1993 and has a close cooperation with both artistic leaders of Coyote, Ms Meyer and Mr Van Ginkel”.
Theatregroup Coyote has stopped her activities from 2013. Ruud van Ginkel is continuing his activities in his Aikido organisation Aikido Shoryukai in the Netherlands and gives Aikido trainings internationally. Hélène Meyer has worked as a teacher at the University of the Arts in Arnhem in the Netherlands and is now working as a freelance director and gives acting workshops in the Netherlands and internationally.