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Mar. 25, 2020
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Kenichi Tani’s 1986: Moebius strip wins the 23rd Tsuruya Namboku Memorial Drama Award
Sponsored by the Kobun Foundation, the Tsuruya Namboku Memorial Award is a yearly drama award for new plays staged in Japanese that year. For the 23rd Tsuruya Namboku Memorial Award, seven active theater journalists formed a selection committee, gathering on Dec. 19, 2019 to nominate four works during their first round of selections. Of these, Kenichi Tani’s 1986: Moebius strip was chosen as the winner at the selection committee meeting held on Jan. 15, 2020. The prize is two million yen.
Kenichi Tani is a writer, director and translator. He was born in Fukushima Prefecture in 1982 and grew up in Kashiwa City in Chiba Prefecture. He is the leader of the company DULL-COLORED POP, and the representative of Theatre des Annales. He majored in the Drama and Theatre Arts course of the Department of Literature of Meiji University and then studied Theatre and Drama at the University of Kent at Canterbury, UK, after which he started his own company. Appraised as “A fortunate marriage of innovative methodology and a solid grounding in traditional drama” (Ai Nagai), Tami’s creative style is pop, rock and literary, winning praise from a broad base of critics for both his scripts and directing
This award-winning play is the second of Tani’s Fukushima Trilogy, a human drama based on two and a half years of investigation and interviews relating to the nuclear power plant disaster in Fukushima in 2011, that weaves together the stories of three generations of a family in affected area. Based on interviews of the actual mayor, Tadao Iwamoto, of one of the towns in the affected area around the power plant, the play tell of his life and the troubles suffered by the local governments in dealing with the disaster. It was performed as DULL-COLORED POP’s 20th production in Tokyo, Osaka and Fukushima in the three months from July to September 2019.
Artist Interview – Kenichi Tani
+Nominated works (in performance order)
Hitohamina Hitonaminoby Takuya Yokoyama
Inochi, Giga Nagasu by Suzuki Matsuo
Utsukushiku Aoku by Masaaki Akahori
1986: Moebius strip by Kenichi Tani
Selection Committee: Hiroko Yamaguchi (Asahi Newspaper), Masako Nakamura (Jiji Press), Naoyuki Hayashi (Nikkan Sports), Yoichi Uchida (Nikkei Newspaper), Sayumi Uchino (Hochi Newspaper), Shoko Kodama (Mainichi Newspaper), Hideki Sukenari (Yomiuri Newspaper)
+Tsuruya Namboku Memorial Award