Stage actor Mansaku Nomura, a designated living national treasure, and his son, Mansai, gave performances of kyogen (traditional comic plays) in Beijing on Friday to mark the 40th anniversary Sunday of the conclusion of the Japan-China peace and friendship treaty.

At the beginning of the show, Mansai told the audience that “the kyogen theater depicts human nature familiar to everyone.”

“I hope you’ll watch kyogen performances in Tokyo next time,” said Mansai, who will be the chief executive creative director of the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2020 Olympics.

The plays “Bo Shibari” (“Tied to a Stick”), “Kawakami” (“Headwater”) and “Kusabira” (“Mushrooms”) were part of the performance. Mansai’s son, Yuki, also took part. Mansai is well-known in China as the main character in the Japanese film “Onmyoji.”

The 740 or so tickets for the event sold out in about 30 minutes, while a kyogen workshop scheduled to be held at the Japanese Embassy in Beijing on Saturday with Mansaku and Mansai in attendance was swamped by applications.

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.