Support for Collaborative Creations between Japanese and International Artists International Creations in Performing Arts 2021

For 2021, the projects below were selected under competitive bidding. (Applicant groups are listed in chronological order of performance dates.)

Seinendan and Pascal RAMBERT (France)

Project title: "KOTATSU"

photo of Oriza Hirata

photo of Pascal RAMBERT
(c) Vanessa Rabade

KOTATSU is a new work by the leading French playwright and director Pascal RAMBERT. It is the first genuine international exchange for the Seinendan Theater Company in the coronavirus era. The culmination of a series of exchanges that began in 2006, this is the first play for Japanese actors written by RAMBERT. It is a co-creation with HIRATA Oriza (co-producer and director of the Japanese version) and Seinendan staff and actors. The story takes place at New Year when a family that has grown a small company into an international major corporation in the space of one generation gets together with relatives and friends. The actors are YAMAUCHI Kenji, HYODO Kumi, OTA Hiroshi, CHINEN Mima, SHIN Soge, OGINO Yuri, SATOU Shigeru, MORI Issei, NAGOYA Megumi, ASAMURA Kamilla, and others.
Performance: September 8, 2021 (venue: Ebara Riverside Theatre)

Saitama Arts Theatre and Christopher Green (U.K.)

Project title: "The Digital Home"

photo of Naoki Sugawara
(c)Kazuki Kusaka

Portrait of Chris Chosen
(c) Sorcha Bridge

This work is an online performance in Japanese and English of The Home by the British playwright and director Christopher GREEN. Expanding on the original work, it is a piece of immersive theater where the world of a residential care home is simulated for the audience. Audiences visit a fictional home for the elderly (The Home) created in virtual space (via websites and apps) and witness the lives of the residents through various contents, mainly video images. There is also an online workshop in which the audience experiences "rehearsals for aging" through interactive live with the facility staff and residents, who are played by actors.
The director of OiBokkeShi theater group, which specializes in aging and drama, SUGAWARA Naoki, wrote the Japanese script and directed the Japanese version. The English version and overall direction is handled by Christopher GREEN. Produced in association with Saitama Arts Theater, The Albany (U.K.), Entelechy Arts, and Christopher GREEN, the Japanese version is performed by Saitama Gold Theater and other actors.
The Digital Home is currently being shown online on a special website and downloadable application where users can view the virtual facility.
The Japanese version of the online workshop was held from October 8-10, 2021. The English version was held from November 3-14.

*For more details, please refer to the website of the Saitama Arts Foundation.

Setagaya Public Theatre and Rapahëlle Boitel (France)

Project title: "Firece 5"

photo of young Japanese circus artists
(c)Takehiro Goto

photo of Raphaëlle BOITEL
(c)Louis-Michel Grevent

Japanese-French collaboration between Raphaëlle BOITEL and young Japanese circus artists who will lead the next generation of contemporary circus.
A Japanese-French collaboration based on 5es Hurlants, a piece directed by Raphaëlle BOITEL and performed worldwide by Company L'Oublié(e), Fierce5 is a blend of dance, aerial dance, acrobatics, juggling and other techniques performed by five promising Japanese circus artists selected by BOITEL after auditions. The performers are MINAKAWA Mayumu, HASEGAWA Aimi, SUGIMOTO Shun, MEGURO Yosuke, YOSHIKAWA Kento, and others. The theme is "nanakorobi yaoki" (stumble seven times, get up eight times). The cries of the performers hint at the underlying dangers of what is essentially a poetic, positive portrayal of human beings. The premiere performance was held in October 2021 at Setagaya Public Theatre.
Performance: October 9-11, 2021 (venue: Setagaya Public Theatre)

*For more details, please refer to the website of Setagaya Public Theatre.

chelfitsch & Dai Fujikura with Klangforum Wien (Austria)

Project title: "Work-In-Progress for Music Theatre Production"

photo of playwright/director OKADA Toshiki
(c)Kikuko Usuyama

photo of FUJIKURA Dai, a composer
(c)Alf Solbakken

photo of Klangforum Wien
(c)Tina Herzl

The Vienna-based contemporary music ensemble Klangforum Wien and FUJIKURA Dai, a composer of contemporary music who works around the world from his base in London, have teamed up with chelfitsch, the theater company led by playwright/director OKADA Toshiki, to create a new kind of music theater that marks a clear departure from opera. How do actors—not singers—refine a work by making the music and speech resonate together using another technique than singing the words along to a melody? In this work, leading figures in the worlds of contemporary music and contemporary theater explore a new relationship between music and words. This title is in November 2021, and will be available online.
(The world premiere of this piece is scheduled for 2023.)
Performance: November 5, 2021 (venue: Tower Hall Funabori)

*For more details, please refer to the website of chelfitsch.

Shizuoka Performing Arts Center (SPAC) and T2G – Théâtre de Gennevilliers Centre Dramatique National (France)

Project title: SPAC AUTUMN – SPRING 2021 – 2022 #2 "The Cherry Orchard"

Photo: Hirotaka Hashimoto

(c) Olivier Roller

The Cherry Orchard is a production of the Shizuoka Performing Arts Center (SPAC) and Théâtre de Gennevilliers Centre Dramatique National. Working on the Chekhov play with Japanese and French actors, director Daniel JEANNETEAU has created a stage setting that stirs viewers' memories and reflects the depth of the human psyche in delicate art and lighting. The Cherry Orchard is the fourth collaboration between JEANNETEAU and SPAC following on from Blasted (premiered 2009), The Glass Menagerie (premiered 2011) and The Blind (2015). With French and Japanese spoken on stage, the play presents a complete reimagining of Chekhov's world of drama. The premiere is in November 2021.
Performance: November 13-December 12, 2021 (venue: Shizuoka Arts Center)

*For more details, please refer to the website of the Shizuoka Performing Arts Center (SPAC)

SCOT (Suzuki Company of Toga) and Restu Kusumaningrum (Indonesia) "Electra"

Project title: "Electra"

photo of SUZUKI Tadashi

photo of Indonesian actors

Electra is an international collaboration between the Suzuki Company of Toga (SCOT) led by SUZUKI Tadashi and a group of Indonesian actors. SUZUKI directed a SCOT production of Dionysus (joint production with the Japan Foundation Asia Center), which ran from 2015 to 2019. Featuring Japanese, Indonesian, and Chinese actors, the production was performed and highly acclaimed in both Japan and Indonesia. As a project to further expand on this success, actors who had been trained using the Suzuki training method under the Indonesian producer Restu Imansari Kusumaningrum were selected by audition. In addition to percussion by TAKADA Midori, the play shines a light on the rich heritage of Asian theatre to present a new version of the Greek drama to the world. The premiere is in November 2021 at Toga Grand Theatre (Toga Dai-Sanbo).
Performance: November 27, 2021 (venue: Toga Grand Theatre (Toga Dai-sanbo))

*For more details, please refer to the Suzuki Company of Toga (SCOT) website.

Company Derashinera and LEE Ren Xin (Malaysia), LIU Juichu (Taiwan)

Project title: "TOGE"

photo of ONODERA Shuji, KAJIHARA Akiko, LIU Juichu, LEE Ren Xin

Toge is a new dance creation by Company Derashinera, who has collaborated extensively with performers across Asia. Directed by ONODERA Shuji, Company Derashinera members, KAJIHARA Akiko, LIU Juichu (Taiwan), LEE Ren Xin (Malaysia), and other international artists explore shared adaptability in different locations and examine how we can put our differences aside and live together. With the very survival of person-to-person exchanges at stake amid the pandemic, the work attempts to avert ruptures, to support opportunities for coming into contact with different value systems, and to connect to the future by sharing with society at large. After a series of workshops with a focus on body language, the piece premieres at the Atrium in Kanagawa Arts Theatre (KAAT) in December 2021.
Performance: December 9-19, 2021 (venue: Kanagawa Arts Theatre (KAAT))

*For more details, please refer to the Company Derashinera website.

S.C.ALLIANCE Inc. and Shen Kyomei RIBEIRO, Gabriel LEVY, Ari COLARES (Brazil)

Project title: "Sky Bridge"

Fusing the cultures of Japan and Brazil, the "Sky Bridge Project" is a new video production for fulldome where primitive life breathes and the voices of people, animals, and spirits reverberation among beautiful landscape and flowing, surging water. The myths and tales that have been passed down the generations form symphonic poems, that integrate the sounds and murmurs, prayers and songs of living creatures rooted in the cultures of Japan and Brazil despite a distance of 17,600 km. Symphonic poems chance on each other as they pass through the high-dimensional space-time where the spirit world merges with the ground-air-space. A new "Sky" unlike any other emerges out of the collaboration between visual arts director HASHIMOTO Daisuke, sound designer OTAKE Mayumi, and the musicians KOBAYASHI Yohei, Shen Kyomei RIBEIRO, and Gabriel LEVY and Ari COLARES.
Performance: December 23, 2021 (venue: Saitama City Space theater)

*For more details, please refer to the S.C.Alliance website and Instragram

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