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Aug. 6, 2018
Japan Topics
Dance Dance Dance@YOKOHAMA 2018 (Aug. 4 – Sept 30, 2018)
 
Dance Dance Dance@YOKOHAMA 2018 is the third holding since the inaugural holding in 2012, and this year Lyon Dance Biennale artistic director Dominique Hervieu and Ryohei Kondo of Condors are serving as this festival’s new directors. This cross-genre festival taking the city of Yokohama as its stage presents a program of approximately 200 performances, not only of ballet, contemporary dance, street dance, social dance, cheerleading and traditional Japanese dance but also works that transcend the boundaries of nationality, gender, and whether the people have disabilities or not. Featured in the opening program, the “Yokohama Bayside Ballet,” is an event that takes advantage of the unique Yokohama environment by utilizing an outdoor stage near the harbor.
This year being a year of celebratory events marking the 160th anniversary of the friendship agreement between France and Japan, Hervieu is actively serving as a bridge between the dance festivals of the two sister cities of Lyon and Yokohama. Invited companies and artists include France’s Ballet de Lorraine, leading British choreographer Akram Khan and others, as well as a co-produced program of Japanese and French hip hop artists titled “Triple Bill.” Street dance pioneer Kader Attou and emerging young artist Jann Gallois will each present the world premieres of new works using selected Japanese dancers, and Tokyo Gegegay will participate with a new work (after being created and performed in Yokohama, all of these works will tour to France for performances on the Japonismes 2018 program, the Lyon Dance Biennale and other venues).
Ryohei Kondo presents a “Ryohei Kondo Yokohama Gala” featuring pieces by his company Condors and a work titled “intermezzo – Honki no Hashi Yasume” performed by the artificial-leg dancer Koichi Omae and Motoko Hirayama in outdoor stage performances. Kondo will also direct the open-participation type program “Yokohama Dance Paradise” with performances at various venues around the city. This program will have dance events on weekends during the festival in open spaces like those in front of the stations and in shopping malls, etc., and on the last day of the festival there will be a large-scale event in which all of the dancers and participants spectators will dance an original piece choreographed by Kondo.
There will also be programs aimed at providing dance education the next generation of potential dancers, including the “School of Dance” program in which artists active on the front line of the dance scene go to schools to give dance classes, the “18 Ward Dance Workshops” program for children, a dance troupe based on British-born anime characters “Shaun the Sheep” that visits nursery schools and day-care centers, a high school dance club supporter group and more.
+Dance Dance Dance@YOKOHAMA 2018
https://dance-yokohama.jp/

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
Western Germany’s Grand Performing arts festival Ruhr Triennale opens (Aug. 9 – Sep. 23, 2018)
 
The Ruhr Triennale is known as a festival that chooses one of the most vibrant producers in the German-language countries as its artistic director every three years. For the 2018 festival, the overall programing director is Stefanie Carp, who has served as the chief dramaturge at the National Theater Zurich and Artistic director of the Vienna Festival.
Carp is known for her agenda that addresses pressing political issues, and for this festival she has chosen the theme of “In-between Time” as a suggestion that our human state is one of reflecting on the lives of the previous generation to shape new lifestyles for the future. In terms of the economy, politics and the environment, Carp believes that we are expected to make dramatic changes in the way we live today.
Symbolic of this theme, an Opening Speech was given by the Indian philosopher Vandana Shiva on the subject of Global Justice and Solidarity. As an opening work, director Christoph Marthaler, who has been an important supporter in Carps long years as a dramaturge, uses the entire Jarhunderthalle hall to stage a music theater performance titled Universe, Incomplete centered on the unfinished project Universe Symphony of composer Charles Ives.
Also, works have been invited by artists like Burkina Faso-born choreographer Serge Aimé Coulibaly and Moroccan-French artist Bouchra Khalili that address the issues of people who live lives in the chasm between two countries. A new work titled Exodos has also been commissioned from choreographer Sasha Waltz. Works by such artists as Mariano Pensotti, Nature Theater of Oklahoma, Olu Oguibe and others are also on the program.

Festival Outline
Taking three years as one season, this festival is held annually since 2002 in the industrial city of Bochum and others in the Ruhr region of western Germany. The founder and first artistic director of the festival was Gerard Mortier, former artistic director of the Salzburg Music Festival and the National Opera of Paris. Based on the idea of connecting the industrial monuments of the Ruhr region with an international arts festival, former giant machining halls and coking plants were renovated to become innovative performance venues. Each year a new theme is chosen for a program of cutting-edge works of theater, dance, opera, jazz, pop music and fine arts. There is a change in the festival director once every three years. The festival’s director from 2006 to 2008 was theater director Jürgen Flimm, who served as the theater department director of the Salzburg Music Festival. From 2009 to 2011, theater director Willy Decker served as the festival director For the 2012-14 season the artistic director was the composer and director Heiner Goebbels. From 2015 the new director is Johan Simons, former director at one of Germany’s leading public theaters, Münchner Kammerspiele. From 2018, the new artistic director is Stefanie Carp.
+Ruhrtriennale International Festival of the Arts
https://www.ruhrtriennale.de/de/home/

The 72nd Avignon Festival in France (Jul. 6 – 24, 2018)
 
For this year’s Avignon Festival (Festival d’Avignon), the program focused mainly on European artists. On the program were a long list of big names like Didier Galas, Raymond Hoche, Ivo van Hove, Sasha Waltz, Milo Rau and others. From outside Europe are artists including Iran’s Amir Reza Koohestani, who is currently a resident artist at Munich Kammerspiele, and Egypt’s Ahmen El Attar among others. Attar was also responsible for the programming of the “Arab Focus” program for small-theater artists from the Arab countries in the Avignon Theater Festival OFF held simultaneously with the main festival.
Since Olivier Py became artistic director of the festival, one of the focuses of the festival is story-based drama, and chosen this year for the opening performances in the central court of the Palais des Papes was a production of Seneca’s Thyestes directed by British director Thomas Jolly (b. 1982, associate artist of the National Theatre of Strasbourg). Another work of note was La Reprise, a documentary theatre production by Swiss director Milo Rau based on the story of an actual murder of a gay man in Belgium in 2012. The real tragedy of the man’s murder in the streets on a winter night is played out in all the horrible detain of the brutal murder.
Lille native director Julien Gosselin presented a 10-hour production Players, Mao II, The Names, an adaptation of a book by American author Don DeLillo. The three-volume original deals with the underlying themes of terrorism and violence.
Among the works by young artists, was the production of Medusa by the French artist collective Les bâtards dorés that won the Audience Prize and Jury Prize at the 2017 Festival Impatience, and the cross-genre performance work Romances Inciertos, Another Orlando by the director, playwright, composer and visual artist Nino Laisne and other works.

Festival Outline
Founded by actor and director Jean Vilar in 1947, the Avignon Festival has become one of the largest in Europe in terms of the scale, number and quality of new works. From 2004, the festival has adopted an “associate artist” system under which a different artist is chosen every year to participate in the selection of the next festival’s program. In recent years, the program includes about 40 works performed at some 20 venues around the city, with the central court of the Palais des Papes and the Carrière de Boulbon quarry as two of the main venues. Visitors during the festival total about 100,000 each year, a number roughly equal to the city’s population. The European press regularly publishes feature articles about the Avignon Festival with daily critiques of the performances that at times spark large-scale debates in the theater world, as was the case with the works of Jan Fabre in 2005. Held simultaneously with the festival is the Avignon Theater Festival OFF (http://www.avignonleoff.com/) presenting a large number of works. The OFF festival adopts an open participation policy. Also, in addition to performing arts many exhibitions, concerts, poetry readings and other events are held, bringing a festive mood to the entire city throughout the festival’s run. Director Olivier Py was appointed festival director in 2013. The 2014 festival featured from Japan Maharabharata, l’episode du roi Nata directed by Satoshi Miyagi and French master Claude Régy directed Japanese actors in a production of Maurice Maeterlinck’s Intérieur.
+Festival d'Avignon
http://www.festival-avignon.com/en/
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