Nobuko Tanaka

Nobuko Tanaka is a stage writer who has regularly contributed contemporary theater and dance articles to The Japan Times since 2001. She also writes for several Japanese and overseas magazines and web sites. As a promoter, she takes Japanese artists to foreign theater festivals.

For Nobuko Tanaka's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

'Mercury Fur' exposes a caring kind of depravity

Feb 18, 2015

'Mercury Fur' exposes a caring kind of depravity

After the premiere of “Mercury Fur” at Theatre Tram in Tokyo’s lively Sangenjaya district this month, Issey Takahashi, who stars in that dystopian 2005 play by Philip Ridley, declared: “I think this is a very dark prophecy, but as I was acting my character ...

No-frills dramatist casts Japan in a different light

Feb 11, 2015

No-frills dramatist casts Japan in a different light

The title of Yudai Kamisato’s new work “+51 Aviacíon, San Borja” references his grandmother’s address in Lima and the international telephone dialling code of Peru — but that only hints at the unusually cosmopolitan background of this 32-year-old Japanese playwright and director who also ...

Double bill seeks out unknowns

Feb 11, 2015

Double bill seeks out unknowns

Like many others in Japan’s rising performing-artist generation, 34-year-old Ney Hasegawa says he first felt the lure of the stage when he went to see shōgekijō (small-scale youth theater) plays while he was in high school. After that, he started taking an interest in ...

Ninagawa still exploring in eighth take on 'Hamlet'

Feb 4, 2015

Ninagawa still exploring in eighth take on 'Hamlet'

Yukio Ninagawa’s “cherry-blossom” staging of “Macbeth” at the Edinburgh Festival in 1985, with actors in that famously Scottish play sporting kimono rather than kilts, was a sensation due to its radical reimagining of so revered a work. Since then, the 79-year-old director’s uniquely visual ...

Yokohama fest offers a performing-arts feast

Jan 28, 2015

Yokohama fest offers a performing-arts feast

Since Tokyo Performing Arts Market began in 1995, the annual event has established itself as one of Asia’s leading trade shows for creators, producers and festival organizers — as well as being a great chance for general audiences to catch a wide range of ...

Avignon chief sees culture and politics sharing the stage

Jan 21, 2015

Avignon chief sees culture and politics sharing the stage

“The Avignon Festival is not only about shows and theater, but also about thinking, searching and seeking to understand the world and its politics — and offering an opportunity for three weeks’ intellectual life experience every year,” Olivier Py, the event’s artistic director, declared ...

French triumph frees SPAC pioneer to be bolder still

Jan 21, 2015

French triumph frees SPAC pioneer to be bolder still

Following on Olivier Py’s comment in the accompanying story that “everybody” at last year’s Avignon Festival loved Satoshi Miyagi’s “Mahabharata — Nalacharitam,” which Py, as the festival’s director, had awarded the honor of opening the event, I rolled up to Shizuoka Performing Arts Center ...

2014: New horizons opened up in Japan's theater world

Dec 24, 2014

2014: New horizons opened up in Japan's theater world

Looking back over the past 12 months in Japan’s theater world, it’s clear that one encouraging trend is a lessening of the capital’s dominance. Contemporary drama in this country has long been centralized on Tokyo, where major theaters plan their programs far in advance, ...

Silence is golden in art-comedy for all

Dec 17, 2014

Silence is golden in art-comedy for all

“I’ve been drawing pictures for as long as I can remember,” Kentaro Kobayashi said when I asked him how he came to be such a versatile and popular entertainer. Sporting a smart white shirt, the good-looking Yokohama native went on to explain that he ...