Summit spotlights school dramatists

Mar 25, 2015

Summit spotlights school dramatists

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“Diversity is the outstanding attraction of high school drama, so I’m always appreciating afresh theater’s myriad charms,” the prominent director Keisuke Tanaka said with a beaming smile during a recent interview ahead of the fifth annual High School Drama Summit at Tokyo’s leading Agora ...

All change for Kanze noh theater

Mar 18, 2015

All change for Kanze noh theater

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Of Japan’s many traditional performing arts, noh is the most refined — and among its most prominent figures today is 55-year-old Kiyokazu Kanze, the 26th head of its largest faction, the Kanze School. A descendant of the father and son pair Kan’ami and Zeami ...

Psycho-drama mystery tests Tani's 'pop' principles

Mar 18, 2015

Psycho-drama mystery tests Tani's 'pop' principles

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“Probably nobody ever got involved with theater the way I did,” Kenichi Tani said with a laugh, explaining that because his teachers at school were “really boring” he set his sights on becoming an interesting teacher in the future. “So I often skipped classes ...

'Titanic' set to sail into Japanese hearts

Mar 11, 2015

'Titanic' set to sail into Japanese hearts

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English director Thom Southerland’s reworking of the megahit Broadway musical “Titanic” was an instant sensation when it opened in August 2013 at the popular midsize Southwark Playhouse in a trendy part of South London by the River Thames. With its whole run a sellout, ...

Going where Terayama's rare spirit lives on

Mar 11, 2015

Going where Terayama's rare spirit lives on

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The avant-garde stage and film director, poet, critic, author and founder of the experimental theater group Tenjo Sajiki, Shuji Terayama (1935-83), influenced theater the world over with his iconoclastic plays such as “Mink Marie,” “Heretics” and “Directions to Servants.” From the early 1970s, his ...

Tokyo Ballet revisits 'Giselle' anew

Mar 11, 2015

Tokyo Ballet revisits 'Giselle' anew

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Ballet legend Vladimir Malakhov’s first connection with Japan was more than 20 years ago, when he danced in the World Ballet Festival in Osaka opposite Alessandra Ferri in a piece from Marius Petipa’s 1850 revival of “Giselle.” Now, as the Tokyo Ballet’s artistic adviser ...

John Caird delivers home truths with 'Twelfth Night'

Mar 4, 2015

John Caird delivers home truths with 'Twelfth Night'

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As an Honorary Associate Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company, John Caird may be one of the leading pillars of the English theater establishment, but in a recent interview with The Japan Times, this acclaimed director of plays, musicals and opera declared, “In a ...

Kabuki icon takes Dazzle dancers to new levels

Mar 4, 2015

Kabuki icon takes Dazzle dancers to new levels

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Street dance has been growing in popularity for years among younger generations in “Cool Japan,” with displays often attracting crowds of passers-by. Though many artists perform alone in public, others have pooled their talents to help broaden their appeal. Among those, one standout is ...

A 'Swan Lake' of diversity

Feb 25, 2015

A 'Swan Lake' of diversity

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“Ballet must be accessible,” the French choreographer and artistic director of The Ballet of Monte Carlo, Jean-Christophe Maillot, believes — and the upcoming Japan premiere of “LAC,” his most ambitious reconfiguration of a classic to date, promises to attract both fans of Tchaikovsky’s famed ...

French artiste par excellence hails noh highs

Feb 25, 2015

French artiste par excellence hails noh highs

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French comedian extraordinaire Guillaume Gallienne has a sizeable Japanese fan base, which gratifies him most heartily. “I feel like the Japanese get me and vice versa — and at one time, I thought I’d even make my home here,” the 42-year-old performer/filmmaker said in ...