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Jul. 17, 2018
Japan Topics
Tomoko Mukaiyama and Un Yamada collaboration GAKA performed in the Netherlands and Japan (June 15 – July 22)
 
Netherlands-based pianist and artist Tomoko Mukaiyama and Japanese choreographer and dancer Un Yamada have collaborated for the first time to create the new performance work GAKA, which had its world premiere at the outdoor performing arts festival Oerol Festival on the island of Terschelling in northern Netherlands. The premiere performances were held for ten days beginning on June 15 using the borrowed seaside landscape at sunset.
This work takes as its theme artistic styles that have been passed down for centuries in Japan and blends them into a composition of “Music and dance, voice and prayer.” Tomoko Mukaiyama was born and raised in Shingu City, Wakayama Prefecture has created the work’s concept and does the directing, while Un Yamada did the choreography to create a new style of contemporary work. The music is composed by Ukranian composer Maxim Shalygin and costumes are created by Chinese-born Ting Gong, and the all-female dancers are members of the Co. Un Yamaha and internationally active dancers such as Ema Yuasa and so on.
In July, the Japan premiere of GAKA will be held in the courtyard of The Museum of Art, Kochi with additional local performers, after which it will be performed on the Maehama Shore of Tokyo’s Kozushima island.
+Japan-Netherlands joint production GAKA premiere tour 2018
June 15 (Fri.) – June 24 (Sun.) Oerol Festival (Terschelling, Netherlands)
July 13 (Fri.) – July 14 (Sat.) The Museum of Art, Kochi courtyard, Kochi Prefecture
July 21 (Sat.) – July 22 (Sun.) Kozushima island, Maehama Shore, Tokyo
+Museum of Art, Kochi
https://moak.jp/EN.pdf

d-soko Theater “Dance ga Mitai!” 20 “With Yameru Maihime Performance” to be held (July 24 – Aug. 5, 2018)
 
The contemporary dance festival “Dance ga Mitai! (We want to see dance!) is organized by the Tokyo small-theater space d-soko Theater. This festival was launched in 2001 with a concept of a platform to “stimulate dance,” and featuring cross-genre programing of contemporary dance, modern dance and Butoh, it offers a platform for experimental dance by artists ranging from emerging young talents to internationally recognized choreographers and dancers.
The theme for this, the 20th holding of the festival, is the first-generation pioneer of the Butoh movement, Tatsumi Hijikata (1928 – 86). As the main feature of the festival, seven artist groups ranging from young contemporary dance artists to leading figures of the Butoh world will compete with original dance compositions based on Hijikata’s book Yameru Maihime (literally: “Sick dancing girl”) (published by Hakusuisha, 1983). This book, which has been called “Butoh in words,” is known as one written in a very unique style of language that is by no means easy to understand and continues to fascinate and puzzle researchers, critics and Butoh artists. Certainly worthy of note is the approach taken to it by Akira Kasai, who worked together with Hijikata in the founding of the Butoh style.
In addition to the seven works of this series, two winning works from the open call dance competition “New Artist Series 16” will be added to the program to bring the total to nine works.
+Yameru Maihime performers:
Momoko Shiraga-Kankitsu Trio (Jul. 24)
Seina IMAEDA/Suichu-megane∞ (Jul. 25)
Yukio Suzuki (Jul. 26)
Kim Itoh (Jul. 28, 29)
Ikumi Otsuka (Jul. 30)
Ketagoro (Jul. 31)
Ikuyo Kuroda (Aug. 2, 3)
Akira Kasai-Tatsumi Hijikata Genfukei (Aug. 4, 5)
+d-soko Theater
http://www.d-1986.com/

Japonismes 2018: les âmes en resonance: Stage performance lineup announced
 
Japonismes 2018: les âmes en resonance (souls in resonance) will take place from July 2018 to February 2019 with events at more than 20 venues around the city of Paris, France. As 2018 marks the 160th anniversary of the Treaty of Amity and Commerce between France and Japan, this project has been planned to introduce the great variety and universal appeal of Japanese culture in Paris and for transmission around the world. The official program will include more than 50 events in the four areas of exhibitions, stage performances, film screenings and lifestyle culture.
Approximately 30 stage performances are planned. They include “YÛGEN” Nô x 3D image directed by Amon Miyamoto, Mahabharata - Nalacharitam directed by Satoshi Miyagi, Kafka on the Shore as directed by the late Yukio Ninagawa, a production of In the Forest, Under Cherries in Full Bloom directed by Hideki Noda, and a Contemporary Theater Series featuring works by Kuro Tanino, Shu Matsui, Takahiro Fujita, Hideto Iwai, Toshiki Okada and Kunio Sugihara. Dance performances will include a new duo piece by Mirai Moriyama and Kaori Ito, About Kazuo Ohno by Takao Kawaguchi and more. For details, see the event website.
+Japonismes 2018: les âmes en resonance stage performance program:
Concert of Japanese drums and shamisen
(Jul. 5 - 6 ,2018 at Japan Expo)
Wadaiko presented by DRUM TAO
(Jul. 13 - 15, 2018 at La Seine Musicale)
Imperial Gagaku
(Sep. 3, 2018 at Philharmonie de Paris)
SHOCHIKU GRAND KABUKI
(Sep. 13 - 19, 2018 at Chaillot – Théâtre national de la Danse)
“SAMBASÔ, divine dance” performed by Mansaku and Mansai Nomura, designed by Hiroshi Sugimoto
(19 - 25, 2018 at Théâtre de la Ville – Espace Cardin)
Contemporary Theater Series: “Dark Master” and “Avidya – The Ignorance Inn” directed by Kuro Tanino
Dark Master: Sep. 20-24, 2018 at Théâtre de Gennevilliers
Avidya: Sep. 25-29, 2018 at Théâtre de Gennevilliers
*Daniel Jeanneteau (director of Théâtre de Gennevilliers) Interview
Contemporary Theater Series: “PROUD SON” directed by Shu Matsui
(Oct. 5-8, 2018 at Théâtre de Gennevilliers)
Contemporary Theater Series: “Throw away Your Books, Let’s Get onto the Streets” directed by Takahiro Fujita
(Nov. 2018 at Maison de la culture du Japon à Paris)
Contemporary Theater Series: New production by Hideto Iwai
(Nov. 22 - Dec. 4, 2018 at Théâtre de Gennevilliers)
Contemporary Theater Series: “Five Days in March” Re-creation and “Silhouette of Desire” (tentative title) directed by Toshiki Okada
(Autumn, 2018 at Centre Pompidou)
Contemporary Theater Series: Kinoshita Kabuki “Kanjincho” supervised and revised by Yuichi Kinoshita, directed and stage designed by Kunio Sugihara
(Nov. 1-3, 2018 at Centre Pompidou)
Contemporary Theater Series: Reading “Blue Sheet”by Norimizu Ameya “Before We Vanish” aka Sanpo Suru Shinryakusha by Tomohiro Maeda
(Sep. 19, 21, 2018 at Théâtre de la Ville – Espace Cardin)
“YÛGEN” Nô x 3D image directed by Amon Miyamoto
(Sep. 2018)
TRIPLE BILL: French-Japanese collaboration project on hip-hop dance
Co-production: Biennale de la danse de Lyon (Artistic Director: Dominique Hervieu)
Choreographer: TOKYO GEGEGAY, etc.
(Sep. 18 - Nov. 14, 2018 at Chaillot – Théâtre national de la Danse)
A production by Hideki Noda
(Sep. 28 - Oct. 3, Chaillot – Théâtre national de la Danse)
Contemporary dance: “About Kazuo Ohno” by Takao Kawaguchi
(Oct. 2-5, 2018 at Théâtre de la Ville – Espace Cardin)
Bunraku
(Oct. 12 - 13, 2018 Cité de la musique)
Gagaku – Ensemble Reigakusha and Kaiji Moriyama
(Oct. 13, 2018 at Philharmonie de Paris)
Taiko – Eitetsu Hayashi and EITETSU FU-UN no KAI
(Oct. 14, 2018 at Philharmonie de Paris)
Buyô (Oct. 14 - 15, 2018 at Cité de la musique)
*Artist Interview: Yasuko Inoue (Traditional Kyoto dance of the Inoue school)
Contemporary dance: “Is it worth to save us?” by Kaori Ito x Mirai Moriyama
(Dec. 18-20,2018 at Maison des Arts de Créteil)
“Mahabharata – Nalacharitam” – directed by Satoshi Miyagi
(music by Hiroko Tanakawa)
(Nov. 19-25, 2018 at La Villette)
Noh and Kyogen
(Feb. 6-10, 2019Cité de la musique)
“Kafka on the Shore” directed by Yukio Ninagawa
(Feb. 15-23, 2019 at Théâtre national de la Colline)
<2.5-Dimensional Musical> “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon” The Super Live
(Period/TBA: TBA)
<2.5-Dimensional Musical> Touken Ranbu: The Musical “Atsukashiyama Ibun 2018 Paris”
(Jul. 15, 2018 at Palais des Congrès de Paris)
*Makoto Matsuda (2.5-Dimensional Musical producer) interivew
HATSUNE MIKU EXPO 2018 EUROPE
(Dec.1, 2018 at La Seine Musicale)
*Wataru Sasaki (Hatsune Miku Producer) interview
Yasutake Shimaji
(Sep. - Nov., 2018 at Chaillot – Théâtre national de la Danse)
Jazz Makoto Ozone featuring No Name Horses
(Dec. 5-6, 2018 at Maison de la culture du Japon à Paris)
TOKYO HIT vol.3 Club event
(Sep. 28, 2018 at Maison de la culture du Japon à Paris)
Techno Concert
(Sep. 28, 2018 at Centre Pompidou)

+Japonismes 2018
https://japonismes.org/

New National Theatre, Tokyo 2018/2019 Season Lineup Announced
 
The New National Theatre Tokyo has announced is 2018/2019 season program. The newly appointed artistic directors are director Eriko Ogawa for the Drama program and conductor Kazushi Ono for the opera program.
As the youngest artistic director in the theater’s history, Eriko Ogawa begins the season with the principles of offering theater for a broad-ranging audience, bringing experimentation and innovation to the theater system and connecting programs horizontally. The new season’s program will include Albert Camus’s The Misunderstanding directed by Bungaku-za’s Kae Inaba, Harold Pinter’s No Man’s Land directed by Satoru Jitsunashi, the Japan premiere of Robert Icke’s Oresteia directed by Satoshi Kamimura, and appearing for the first time, Tengai Amano’s company Shonen-oja-kan will present a new work. Ogawa herself will direct David Hare’s Skylight and a new work directed by Moegi Nogi’.
As a project of the Drama department’s new system for experimentation and pioneering new projects, a production of The Seagull will be staged with a cast all chosen through auditions. Also, as the first production of the new long-term Kotsukotsu Project to create new works, a drama reading (performed by Yu Osawa, Satoshi Nishi and Eiji Nishizawa) will be held.
On the Dance program, the ballet lineup of six productions will begin with a new production of Alice in Wonderland created in collaboration with the Australia Ballet company, A production of The Nutcracker with choreography by Wayne Eagling, and a New Year Ballet program with three old and new productions. Also on the program are a production of La Bayadère directed by Asami Maki with revised choreography, a production of Cinderella with choreography by Frederick Ashton, and a production of Aladdin with choreography by David Bintley. For the New Year Ballet program, Megumi Nakamura will choreograph a production of Phoenix, and she will also serve as advisor for the DANCE to the Future 2019 program. Three more works on the dance program will include a new work based on A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a series project with re-productions of works by pioneers of uniquely Japanese creative dance and a dance performance by Kaiji Moriyama to be enjoyed with children.
For the Opera program, the new artistic director Kazushi Ohno has drawn up a program that emphasizes strengthening the repertoire, beginning a series of works composed by Japanese composers, double bills and new works of Baroque Opera, using popular directors and singers and collaborations with other theaters. Based on these principles, the new season’s program will present four new works. They include a production of The Magic Flute directed by the South African contemporary artist William Kentridge employing video projections; and the world premiere of Shion Monogatari (The Tale of Shion) with music composed by Akira Nishimura and directed by Yoshi Oida with Kazushi Ohno conducting as the first of the series of works by Japanese composers. There will also be a highly anticipated new production of Puccini’s Turandot directed by the artistic director of the Spanish theater-making group La Fura dels Baus, Allex Ollé.
+New National Theatre, Tokyo
http://www.nntt.jac.go.jp/english/

Ko Murobushi’s anthology “Ko Murobushi Shusei” released (Jan. 23, 2018)
 
Kawade Shobo Shinsha, Publishers has released Ko Murobushi Shusei, a collection of the writings of the late Ko Murobushi, internationally renowned Butoh dancer, who passed away suddenly of a heart attack in Mexico in June of 2015 at the age of 68. It consists of writings in newspapers, journals and booklets, and notes and diaries kept in the notebooks of Murobushi, a writer as well as a dancer. The collection was compiled by his former manager, Kimiko Watanabe. Murobushi’s large collection of documents, a definitive inventory of his library, and his collection of videos are also being presented as the “Ko Murobushi Archive.”
Ko Murobushi (1947 – 2015)
Choreographer, butoh artist. Apprenticed under Tatsumi Hijikata in 1969. In 1971 he conducted research on the yamabushi (mountain worshipers) of the Three Holy Mountains of Dewa. In 1972 he joined in the founding of the butoh company Dairakudakan and participated in numerous productions while also serving as a producer for the all-women’s butoh company Ariadone no Kai. In 1976 he started his own butoh school Sebi and opened a studio called Hokuryukyo in the mountains of Gotaishi-cho, Fukui Prefecture, where he performed Komuso (mendicant monk) as his company’s maiden show. In 1978 he participated in the production we performed the work Dernier Eden – Porte de L’au-dela, which enjoyed a well-received month-long run that spread the name “BUTOH” on the world scene for the first time. Since then he has been invited to many festivals with highly improvisational solo performances. From 2000 Murobushi began full-fledged performance activities in Japan beginning the work Edge performed at Kagurazaka die pratze. In 2003 he started the unit Ko & Edge Co. with a group of young performers and presented the work Handsome Blue Sky (Bibo no Aozora). In 2005 he was presented the Award of the Performing Arts Critics Association. In 2006 he presented the work quick silver at the Venice Biennale. Murobushi has also taught at the Centre National de Danse Contemporaine in Angers.
+Ko Murobushi archive (Japanese/English)
https://ko-murobushi.com/eng
+Ko Murobushi interview (November, 2011)
http://www.performingarts.jp/E/art_interview/1109/1.html

Presenter Topics
Opening of one of Austria’s leading comprehensive arts festivals “Wiener Festwochen” (May 11 – June 18, 2018)
 
The Wiener Festwochen (Vienna Festival Weeks) is held annually in May and June over the course of five weeks in the Austrian capital of Vienna. The stated mission of the festival is to select works of music, visual art and performing arts that hold a strong relevance to contemporary society, whilst adhering to the highest aesthetic standards. Tomas Zierhofer-Kin, who has taken over the directorship of the festival beginning last year, has offered the promise for a more accessible festival, stating, “My goal is to present not just art that attacks the local bourgeois, but art that extends a helping hand to many.”
This year the festival will feature 30 works, under the theme “Fragile Democracy,” focusing on works that contemplate such darker emotions as “anxiety” and “fear” as can be felt across the world today, as well as the impacts that they may have on individuals and on society. Larger featured productions include Tiefer Schweitzer: A Holding Center, a work of music theater by Christoph Marthaler in which government officials carry out a “Kafka-esque” debate about an island on a lake that is being overrun by refugees, as well as a theater version of The Virgin Suicides, adapted into film by Sophia Coppola approximately 20 years ago, by Suzan Kennedy, associate artist at the renewed Volksbühne in Berlin. Also to be featured is an exploration of social psychology created through a collaboration with 15 youths titled Crowd, by choreographer Gisèle Vienne, who has also presented works frequently in Japan.
In their work Kamp, the Hotel Modern Theater Company of Rotterdam creates a miniature of the Auschwitz concentration camp on stage. The work is contemplative in nature, with three performers using miniature figures on stage as they attempt to determine the causes of one of the world’s greatest atrocities, while simultaneously filming the figure-acting. Markus Öhrn will present the world premier of his work Domestic Violence Vienna, based on the “Fritzl case,” in which Austrian Elisabeth Fritzl was confined to her father’s home and sexually abused by him for 24 years. Jean Michel Bruyère will be presenting his new work L’Habitude (Habit), inspired by the Black Panthers, integral players in the American Civil Rights movement. Finally from Asia, choreographer Ong Kensen, celebrated in his native Singapore, will present his collaborative work with actors of the National Theater Company of Korea in Trojan Women.

Festival Outline
This is an international festival held since 1951 each May and June in Vienna on the largest scale of any Austrian festival. The venues include the Museums Quartier, Theater an der Wien, Wiener Konzerthaus and the Schauspielhaus, as well as locations like markets and squares around the city, making virtually the entire city the festival’s stage. The programming features operas and performing arts from around the world with leading directors, conductors and orchestras providing the latest in performing arts, consisting of works in both classical styles and the newest productions, along with contemporary works in new staging. From Japan, artists including potudo-ru and Akira Takayama have participated in the past.
+Wiener Festwochen
http://www.festwochen.at/

Berlin’s “Theatertreffen” festival set to open (May 4 – 20, 2018)
 
Held each year in May, this festival focuses on exclusively on theater in the German-speaking world. A panel of approximately seven theater critics within the German-speaking world set out to choose “the ten best productions of the year” each year: selections are made from among works presented in the German-speaking countries of Austria, Switzerland and Germany between 66 and 14 weeks prior to the commencement of the festival. The reasons for selection are published later in the Theatertreffen festival magazine. Also, the panel’s critics send letters stating their reasons for selecting the works to their directors. This year, 33 works were nominated from a total of 409 performances given in 54 German-speaking cities, and after careful consideration 10 final selections were made.
Notable among the final selections are such large productions as The Silver Bullet, written by Elfriede Jelinek and directed by Falk Richter, contemplating 2000 years of human history and Donald Trump; Returning to Reims, directed Thomas Ostermeier; and a seven-hour long production of Faust, directed by Frank Castorf and starring Martin Wuttke.
Other featured productions include Woyzeck, directed by Ulrich Rasches and performed by the Basel Theater; The Odyssey by young German director Antu Romero Nunez, of Portuguese and Chilean parentage, who began attracting attention while still a graduate student; and Anta Helena Recke, the only chosen female writer and also a person of color, who directed the work Middle Kingdom (production by the Munich Kammerspiele).

Festival Outline
This theater meeting is held every year in Berlin in May since 1963. From among the roughly 2,000 theater productions performed each year in the German-speaking countries of Austria, Switzerland and Germany, a jury of freelance theater critics select ten outstanding works to be invited to this festival, which has gained a reputation as a proving ground for young theater makers. During the festival period, the organizers of the Theatertreffen, the Berliner Festspiele, cooperates with the Head Office of the Munich Goethe Institute and Switzerland’s Arts Council Pro Helvetia to organize two weeks of workshops known as the International Forum. This forum is attended by theater-makers under the age of 35, not only from the German-speaking countries but also from other countries around the world. With introductions of scripts and discussions, the forum serves as a platform for young theater people. In addition to the introduction of scripts, it also functions to present two weeks of workshops.
+Theatertreffen
http://www.berlinerfestspiele.de/de/aktuell/festivals/theatertreffen/ueber_festival_tt/aktuell_tt/start.php

South Australia’s largest arts festival, the Adelaide Festival (Mar. 2 – 18, 2018)
 
Founded in 1960, the Adelaide Festival is a large-scale comprehensive arts festival. Its two-and-a-half week program features a wide variety of arts, from theater, music, dance, literature and visual arts to works for children and more. Originally a biennale, the festival has been held annually since 2012. The artistic director until last year was the founder of London’s alternative music festival Meltdown, David Sefton. From 2017, welcomed the former co-directors of Sydney’s Belvoir St. Theatre, Neil Armfield AO and Rachel Healy as artistic directors.
Among this year’s large theatre productions are: Kings of War, a conflation of five plays by Shakespeare (Henry V, Henry VI Part I, II and III, and Richard III) directed by Ivo Van Hove; The Far Side of the Moon, written and directed by Robert Lepage; and the opera production of Hamlet composed by Brett Dean that premiered to high acclaim at the Glyndebourne Festival Opera.
On the dance program are: Akram Khan’s new work XENOS, which he has announced will be his final performances as a dancer in a full-length piece; the piece FLA.CO.MEN performed by the Israel GALVÁN, a famed maverick of the genre; and Bennelong, a work by Bangarra Dance Theatre that explores the life of one of our history’s most significant Aboriginal elders.
During this year’s festival a special program titled Adelaide Writers’ Week will introduce that gathers novelists and writers from around the world to talk on a wide range of subjects.

Festival Outline
Believing in the potential for an arts festival in Adelaide through his involvement in the South Australia national theatre movement, journalist Sir Lloyd Dumas and Adelaide University music professor John Bishop enlisted the support of influential citizens to launch the festival in 1960 with a program of 105 performances (74 for adults and 31 for children) over the course of half a month. Held biennially on even numbered years, the Adelaide Festival and its concurrent Adelaide Fringe Festival grew to become one of Australia’s leading international arts festival events along with those in Sydney and Melbourne. Invited participants from Japan include Daisan Erotica with A Man Named Macbeth in 1994 and Yukichi Matsumoto with Mizumachi in 2000. The festival has been held annually since 2012.
+Adelaide Festival
http://www.adelaidefestival.com.au/

46th Hong Kong Arts Festival opens (Feb. 23 – Mar. 24, 2018)
 
Hong Kong Arts Festival, an international performing arts festival that has continued to present works of some of the biggest arts companies of the East and West and many big-name artists since its first holding in 1973, will be held again this year on a large scale in venues around the city. For the past ten years, the festival’s executive director is Tisa Ho, who is also active in management of Singapore’s Esplanade, marketing and curatorial responsibilities for the Singapore Arts Festival.
This year’s festival adopts the notion of “What’s real to me” as a theme and programed with many works are informed by a highly personal view of reality, which the organizers hope will provoke viewers to think about, and perhaps to questioning their own understanding of what’s real. In the rapidly changing political, economic and cultural aspects of today’s world, where it is increasingly hard to say where reality is headed, are no easy answers to this question, but the festival seeks to pose it in the context of artistic communication.
There are an especially large number of dance works on this year’s program, including the American Ballet Theatre’s new work Whipped Cream choreographed by Alexei Ratmansky; Ballett Zürich’s production Anna Karenina with choreography by Christian Spuck; and invited from Japan is Saburo Teshigawara with his work Tristan and Isolde.
Among the works on the theatre program, Montreal’s contemporary circus company The 7 Fingers presents “Bosch Dreams,” a work that seeks to bring to the stage a world inspired by the surrealistic paintings of Hieronymus Bosch, and from the U.S. the off-off Broadway company Nature Theater of Oklahoma presents Pursuit of Happiness.

Festival Outline
One of the largest-scale performing arts festivals in Asia, the Hong Kong Arts Festival is annually held for about one month from February, after Chinese New Year. In 1972, the Hong Kong Arts Festival Society Ltd. was established by a gathering of prominent figures in Hong Kong society, and since the festival’s first edition held in 1973, it has been introducing excellent performing arts works from China and around the world for more than 30 years. It has been managed with support mainly from the Leisure and Cultural Services Department of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China and the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust.
The programs include performances of a wide range of arts productions from Asia and around the world, including opera, music, jazz, world music, theater, musicals, dance, exhibitions and more are held. The festival also offers full programs of workshops for young people and educational programs.
In the field of contemporary dance, the festival has begun a “Asia-Pacific Dance Platform” to present the works of young choreographers and dance artists active in Asia. With the aim of growing the audience for contemporary dance in Hong Kong, a concurrent program of workshops and discussions is also held. Furthermore, a new platform for crossover experimental works named the “New Stage Series” has also been newly established.
+ Hong Kong Arts Festival
https://www.hk.artsfestival.org/en/
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