Kazuo Ohno, one of the most inspirational figure in Butoh dance, was born in Hakodate City, Hokkaido in 1906. In 1926, Ohno entered the Japan Athletic College. After graduation, he worked as a physical education teacher at Kanto Gakuin High School. Ohno started to learn dancing with two of Japan's modern dance masters, Baku Ishii and Takaya Eguchi. In 1938 Ohno was drafted into the Japanese Army, and went to the front in China and New Guinea for 9 years. In the 1950s, Kazuo Ohno met Tatsumi Hijikata, who inspired him to develop a new form of dance, which he named the Ankoku Butoh. In 1977, Ohno premiered his solo Butoh work directed by Hijikara, "La Argentina Sho," which became a Butoh masterpiece. Ohno remained active as a Butoh dancer after his 90th birthday. His last overseas performance was "Requiem for the 20th Century" held in New York on December 1999 when he was 93 years old. He was awarded a cultural award from Kanagawa Prefecture in 1993, a cultural award from Yokohama city in 1998 and the Michelagelo Antonioni Award for the Arts in 1999.
Kazuo Ohno is featured in Sanbusaku 1 三部作