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Celebrating the 35th anniversary of its foundation, through Sept. 23 the National Theater of Japan in Tokyo is presenting “Honcho Nijushiko” (The 24 Models of Filial Piety), one of the most grandiose historical bunraku plays (jidaimono), almost in its entirety.

Created by a team of six renowned 18th-century bunraku playwrights led by Chikamatsu Hanji, the five-act “Honcho Nijushiko” was first performed at the Takemotoza Theater in Osaka in 1766.

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