Advice for the stage-struck and proofing


We have received a sudden clutch of enquiries from stage-struck readers this week.


Rebecca is wondering if we can help her obtain news of upcoming performances of the butoh dance group Sankaijuku.

Well rebecca, the best way to get in touch with the group is to call Midori Okuyama on (03) 3498 9619 (fax (03) 3498-9624) or write to the group’s office, which can be mailed at 5-5-4-222 Minami Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-0062.

Sankaijuku, which was founded in 1975, also has an official Web site for information on new productions, schedules, performance history, etc. The site is in English as well as Japanese: http://pws.prserve.net/jpinet.sankai/top/hmtl

Acting lessons

A would-be thespian is wondering about acting lessons in English and/or French in Tokyo.

For some reason, it seems simpler to find lessons in French.

A relevant contact here is the Institute Franco-Japonais in Asagaya.

This organization also has facilities in Yokohama and Kyoto. In Osaka and Nagoya, maybe Alliance Francaise can help.

There is a class for definite in Asagaya. Call IFJ course organizer Jean-Phillipe Russ on (03) 5261-3933, or contact drama teacher Luis Solo Martines direct on (03) 3561 3936.

For lessons in English, United Performer’s Studio in Uehara, Shibuya, teaches English to Japanese through drama (03)3466-2041; fax: (03) 3466-2074). Web site: http://upsnews.co.jp

Many of today’s Japanese actors who have a good command of English are ex-students of UPS founder, Yoko Narahashi.

She, by the way, was an associate casting director on Warner Bros.’ “The Last Samurai.”

If you are seeking simply to improve technique, best to join a working amateur company to deepen experience (listings magazines will help you make contact here).

Unless, that is, you personally know of classes to recommend. The Internet most certainly comes up blank in this regard.

Belly dancing

The same can not be said for belly dancing, which R. — a guy, hopefully with an attractive belly — is keen to try.

Search the subject (“belly dancing lessons in Japan”) and among the top 20 out of 9,510 sites, is a list of teachers right around the world, including teachers in Tokyo and Osaka. Beware, however, as sites are not updated as often as they should be and sometimes (especially here) people have moved on.

Australian teacher Jayne Matsuo (jayne@freebellydance.com, or (03) 3498-1132) enthuses “Liven your being . . . free your soul . . . just belly dance!”

Mishaal, who teaches in the Aoyama-dojo, can be reached on mishaal@hpo.net (Web: www.hpo.net/users/mishaal/class/html )

Anne Boudrea, based in Osaka’s Naniwa Ward, is involved with all aspects of middle eastern dance, including its ethnicity and history. Call (090) 3614-7447, or mail: anneb37@hotmail.com


Tony wants to get his thesis checked. “Being dyslexic, I need a proofreader and maybe even an editor. Any ideas?”

Try the Tokyo-based English editing and proofreading company Editfast. This claims (via its Web site www.editfast.com fast) to have over 1,000 editors listed, many offering highly specialized skills — languages, technology, English literature, theology, etc.

You fill in a form to mail, then the company will introduce who they think is the right person for your particular subject, and give you an estimate of cost.

Alternatively, you can search “thesis” and get in contact directly with whoever seems the best qualified.