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Born: 1958
Function: stage director playwright
Company: Daisan Butai / Kyoko no Gekidan

Born in Ehime Prefecture, Kokami was one of the standard bearers of the Shogekijo boom of the eighties. In 1981 he formed the theater group Daisan Butai, which gained popularity with their playful works and ability to capture the feel of the times. In his well-known work Asahi no yo na yuhi o tsurete (With a Sunset Like the Morning Sun), the men waiting for Godot play with some men who are developing the ultimate game. He won the 1995 Kishida Drama Award for Sunafukin no tegami (Snufkin's Letter). Kokami is currently focusing on writing and directing for his new troupe Kyoko no Gekidan, made up of young actors, and his production company Kokami@network. As well as staging plays, he is also involved in a wide range of activities including writing essays and books on theater, appearing on radio and TV, and directing movies. In June 2007, an English version of his play Trance was staged in London with an all-British cast. Kokami is a member of the selection committee for the Kishida Drama Awards.

Photo: UK Performance 2006, ©Third Stage
Toransu (Trance)
Masato, Reiko, and Sanzo are close friends from high school days. They lost touch with each other after graduating, but are reunited under extraordinary circumstances when Masato visits Reiko, now a psychiatrist, as a patient, and when he is rescued, drunk, by Sanzo, who is now working in a gay bar. When Masato is examined by Reiko, he tells her that he suffers lapses in memory, and as his disorder progresses he proclaims that he is the emperor of Japan. Sanzo is attracted to Masato and takes on the task of nursing him, but both Reiko and Sanzo are affected by his delusions… In June 2007, under Kokami’s direction, Trance was performed by an all-British cast at London’s Bush Theatre.

First staged: 1993
Acts/scenes: None
Cast: 3 (2 male, 1 female)
First staged by: Third Stage
[Translation]English: available from Third Stage

Photo: Ito Kazunori
Sunafukin no tegami (Snufkinfs Letter)
A new Japan emerges as small groups of people, each of whom remains true to their principles, go to ground around the country. Conflict and bloodshed abound. Amidst this chaos are a salesman peddling death to suicide volunteers, skirmishes with government troops over popular idols, and strange characters who make no distinction between the two sides. Circulating on the Internet is Snufkin's Letter, a symbol of hope. Reminiscent of the extraordinary growth of cyber networks, this is a story about people seeking "words that cannot be spoken" before the "battle for justice."

First staged: 1994
Acts/scenes: None
Cast: 7 (4 male, 3 female)
First staged by: Daisan Butai