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KUDO Kankuro
Born: 1970
Function: playwright actor

The multi-talented Kudo, born in Miyagi Prefecture, writes scripts for TV and cinema and writes acts, directs, and acts in plays. He has been part of Matsuo Suzuki's Otona Keikaku troupe since 1991, and also writes and directs for the Women's Lib performance series. Kudo is well known for his darkly humorous nonsense plays with fast-paced storylines and lively dialogue. In 2004 he won the 49th Kishida Drama Award for Parco's production of his play Donju (Dull Animal). He was highly acclaimed for his script for the TV drama Ikebukuro West Gate Park, and in recent years has become an enormously popular writer for TV and cinema. In 2002 he won the Art Encouragement Prize for New Artists awarded by the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology for his movie Kisarazu Catseye, and the Japan Academy Prize for Best Script for his movie Go. In 2005 he directed his first movie, Mayonaka no Yaji-san Kita-san (Midnight Yaji and Kita), which won Gold in the Shindo Kaneto Awards. He also formed the comic punk band Group Tamashii, for which he is art director, songwriter, and guitarist.

Photo: Yakou Masahiko
Donju (Dull Animal)
Author Dekogawa is missing, and his editor Shizuka goes to his hometown in search of him. Talking to his former friends, it gradually becomes clear that there is a secret surrounding Dekogawa and a plot to kill him in order to keep that secret. However many times they attempt to kill him with poison or with beatings, though, he keeps coming back to life. Dekogawa’s innate stupidity is his strength. Kudo’s nonsense gags keep coming with plenty of laughs, while the mystery is brilliantly resolved through retrospective scenes that bring us back to the opening scene.

First staged: 2004
Acts/scenes: 2 acts, 42 scenes
Cast: 6 (3 male, 3 female)
First staged by: PARCO Theater

Metaru Makubesu (Metal Macbeth)
It is the year 2206, and Japan is ravaged by war. Having been given a CD of eighties legend band Metal Macbeth by three old women, the warlord Random Star usurps the throne as prophesied… An action version of Shakespeare’s Macbeth set to hard rock music, the progress of the play is synchronized with the events of 1980s Japan.

First staged: 2006
Cast: 31 (21 male, 10 female) + musicians (METAL MACBETH GROUP)
First staged by: Shinkansen