The Japan Foundation
Performing Arts Network Japan
Archive Index Home
Japan Topics
“Postmainstream Performing Arts Festival” opens (Jan. 16 – Mar. 28, 2010)
 For this year’s third holding of the festival, the Belgian unit MaisonDahlBonnema known for its collaborations with Needcompany, a group that pursues “Singing to bring about alienation, to explore new registers, to present stories and ideas in a different way,” will come to Japan for the first time and perform the pop opera The Ballad of Ricky and Ronny. The group Hotel Modern from the Netherlands known for its unique performances using model objects will also be coming to Japan for the first time, bringing a live animation production titled KAMP that is filmed by CCD cameras within a giant model of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp and using several thousand puppets.

Also, Tim Etchells, the director of Britain’s experimental theater company Forced Entertainment, whose performance at 2006’s festival was so well received, graces this year’s schedule again with two works (a monologue for the New York City Players actor Jim Fletcher titled Sight is the Sense that Dying People Tend to Lose First, and a Japan premiere of the 6-hour Question & Answer performance titled Quizoola! for three actors with prepared list of 2,000 questions.

Featured as invited works from Japan will be a renewal of the 2004 work It's just me, coughing, in which Zan Yamashita draws a motif from the free-form haiku of Hosai Ozaki as part of his ongoing pursuit of dance that incorporates words; and a performance of a new work titled Black Hair Ballad by the khoomei vocalist and artist, Fuyuki Yamakawa.

This is a festival that takes a “fragmentary, experimental, and particular” approach to contemporary-ness in presenting “postmainstream” works. Despite being smaller in scale, it presents a program of ambitious works from Japan and abroad. The first festival stimulated the imaginations of young artists in the Japanese theater world by presenting the concert/forum style work Unrehearsed Beauty / Le Génie des Autres by Canada’s PME company and helped create the opportunity for groups like Chelfitsch. In these ways its programs have provided platforms for artists and festivals to interact in creative and stimulating ways.
+Postmainstream Performing Arts Festival (PPAF)
Period: Jan. 16 – Mar. 28, 2010
Venues: Spiral Hall (Aoyama, Tokyo), Vacant (Harajuku, Tokyo)