When Keito Okamoto was offered the title role in French dramatist Florian Zeller’s latest work, “The Son,” he felt the play was written about him.
“It was completely astonishing,” he says. And what makes taking on the role more special is that he will be making his stage debut opposite his actual father, Kenichi.
“The Son,” which is set to open Aug. 30 at the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre in Toshima Ward, centers on a fraught father-son relationship. An intense dissection of family dynamics, the play is mainly set in the apartment of the father, Pierre, whose deeply troubled teenage son, Nicolas, has been caught skipping school. Withdrawn and angry, Nicolas’ behavior baffles Pierre and his ex-wife, Anne (Mayumi Wakamura), who try to help their child while balancing their own personal lives. Despite their best efforts and those of Pierre’s girlfriend, Sofia (Kayo Ise), who has just given birth, nothing seems to draw Nicolas out of his gloomy world as he darkly repeats: “I don't understand what's happening to me.”