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:

Festival/Tokyo speaks with a defiant voice

Oct 6, 2016

Festival/Tokyo speaks with a defiant voice

Press conferences are usually upbeat affairs, but at the one held to herald Festival/Tokyo — a two-month theater festival that kicks off Oct. 15 — Artistic Director Sachio Ichimura appears looking worried and begins proceedings by bemoaning the event's financial situation and wondering aloud ...

Munby's 'Crucible' speaks to societies built on fear

Sep 27, 2016

Munby's 'Crucible' speaks to societies built on fear

"When the opportunity came to work at Theatre Cocoon in Tokyo, I was so excited about the great dramatist Yukio Ninagawa being the artistic director there," the English director Jonathan Munby declared. Of course that was before Ninagawa died, age 80, in May this year. ...

'Dragon Quest' show pulls its audiences into the action

Jul 26, 2016

'Dragon Quest' show pulls its audiences into the action

For gamers and lovers of sheer theatrical spectacle alike, the summer's hottest ticket seems sure to be for "Dragon Quest Live Spectacle Tour," whose 40 shows nationwide are set to be attended by some 400,000 people — with everyone receiving a wristband enabling them ...

Butoh for kids has fun with 'birthday suit' tale

Jul 26, 2016

Butoh for kids has fun with 'birthday suit' tale

"Gloomy," "eerie," "vulgar," "avant-garde" and "conceptual" are adjectives often used to describe butoh, the genre of Japanese modern dance started in 1959 by Tatsumi Hishikata and Kazuo Ohno in which performers usually paint their near-naked bodies white. In contrast, Ikko Tamura — a core member ...

Lepage's '887' addresses memories in magical ways

Jun 21, 2016

Lepage's '887' addresses memories in magical ways

Almost a year after "887" premiered in Toronto in July 2015, and following five-star reviews at every stop on a multinational tour that took in the world's biggest annual theater event, the Edinburgh International Festival, the latest play by Robert Lepage — the Canadian ...

Dramatist speaks up for the downtrodden and new thinking in Japan

Jun 21, 2016

Dramatist speaks up for the downtrodden and new thinking in Japan

Fifty-three year-old Oriza Hirata unexpectedly arrived early for our 9 a.m. interview in a Tokyo family restaurant one recent Sunday morning. Not only that, but the famed playwright and director turned up alone without the squad of minders such people's managers generally send along ...