The lobby of the Kabuki-za in Higashi Ginza — the mecca of kabuki — was swarming with people last week, ahead of the start of this year’s noryo kabuki (summer festival of kabuki).

Not only was it packed, but the air was full of excitement. Those gathered were about to witness a historic crossover: Hideki Noda — the internationally renowned standard-bearer of modern Japanese theater — is this month directing and dramatizing the traditional theater form for the first time.

Unable to view this article?

This could be due to a conflict with your ad-blocking or security software.

Please add japantimes.co.jp and piano.io to your list of allowed sites.

If this does not resolve the issue or you are unable to add the domains to your allowlist, please see out this support page.

We humbly apologize for the inconvenience.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.