THE BALLAD OF NARAYAMA
JUNE 6, 7:00 p.m
Location: Great Hall
| Theater Company 1980 Tokyo – Japan
by Sichiro Fukazawa, directed by Yukio Sekiya
Duration of the show: 1 h 45 min (with Romanian subtitles)
Directed and adapted by Yukio Sekiya
Assistant Director: Mizuki Kawamoto
Translation of the Text: Shigehito Shiga
Decor: Takayo Yamamoto
Costumes: Yuko Ueno
Sound design: Misao Saito
Light design: Kenichi Mashiko
With: Yoshiyuki Shibata, Ippo Fujikawa, Takayo Yamamoto, Tatsuya Kinomura, Hiroyuki Kanbara, Ryoji Ota, Masahiro Totani, Kento Katagiri, Masaru Goto, Yuko Ueno, Hitomi Yamada, Asami Mitsuki, Chiaki Mizui, Maho Sekine, Mihoko Shimizu.
The Ballad of Narayama is based on the book Narayamabushi-ko by Shichiro Fukazawa, which was also adapted for film twice, in 1958 and 1983 (awarded the Palm d'Or at Cannes). The original Sugeki method was used for the stage adaptation.
Sugeki is a theatrical method that does away with realistic sets, costumes and make-up, and the scenes are created with a few black boxes and white ropes, with the physical expressions of the actors playing multiple roles. Simple yet profound, the Sugeki method creates inner drama by stimulating the viewers' imagination.
In a Japanese village surrounded by mountains there is a tradition that old people who reach the age of 70 go and climb to the top of the holy mountain Narayama from where they never return. They abandon themselves there, to save the younger generation from starvation, because food is very scarce. On this mountain people believe that holy gods live and it is a suitable place for old people to die. The action centers on the story of Tatsuhei and Orin's mother, who is approaching 70 years old.
This show is the "Sugeki-esque" stage adaptation of "The Ballad of Narayama" ("Narayamabushi-ko"), a film directed by Shohei Imamura, which received the Palme d'Or Award at the Cannes International Film Festival in 1983 Theater Company 1980 was founded in 1980 by actors who graduated from the lmamura Film School of the Yokohama Broadcasting Technical School (now the Japan Institute of Moving Images). Under Imamura's guidance, the company inherited an endless energy for creation and the spirit of human inquiry. Also, Theater Company 1980 is the only company that was created by Imamura's disciples.
"Sugeki" introduced by Yukio Sekiya, is a fundamental theatrical method that eliminates realistic scenery, costumes and make-up, and whereby scenes are created using multiple black boxes and white ropes, combined with the physical expressions of actors playing multiple roles. Simple, but profound, the theater
"Sugeki" relies on the audience's inner drama, stimulating the imagination. In March 2016, Theater Company 1980 played the show "Sugeki Narayamabushi-ko" in Tokyo. The simple and lively scenes helped the viewers identify with the characters in the story. The story contains essential questions about the meaning of life and death.