Osaka hails renovation of Shochiku-za theater

OSAKA — The city of Osaka inaugurated the Osaka Shochiku-za theater in Chuo Ward’s Minami entertainment district on Feb. 26 with a ceremony to mark the reopening of the newly renovated structure.

Originally built in 1923, it is Japan’s first Western-style theater. It had been closed for reconstruction work for nearly three years. Although most of the structure is newly built, its neo-renaissance facade has been conserved due to its architectural value.

The new theater, which has a capacity of 1,037 seats, is exclusively for theatrical performances and will feature kabuki performances for two months starting March 2 to mark its reopening. The new building will have three training rooms that will be the home of a “Kamigata” kabuki school to nurture young performers of kabuki handed down in the Kyoto-Osaka region.