Contemporary Indian theater probes Shogo Ohta’s world of silence
The Japanese director and playwright Shogo Ohta was renowned for his “silent theater,” which still attracts attention nearly a decade after his death in 2007. The plays are stripped of all dialogue and performed extremely slowly by the actors. From this spectacle emerges a portrait of primordial humanity divested of its sociality, presenting the viewer with a sense of eternity and the transcendental universe. Ohta’s work continues to appeal to a new generation of directors from Japan and overseas. Artistic director for the International Theatre Festival of Kerala, Sankar Venkateswaran is one of India’s most exciting young theater directors today.
In 2011, he first tackled Ohta’s most representative play, The Water Station. On stage there is only an isolated water faucet, a thin stream flowing from its spout. To this “water station” a range of people come and go. Against this highly minimalist setting, a cast of actors drawn from all over India’s diverse ethnic and linguistic groups lends Ohta’s masterpiece a meaning utterly different to previous stagings in Japan. This fresh response to Shogo Ohta from 21st-century India boldly explores the continued possibilities for silent theater.
Post-performance talk: November 13
Speakers: Sankar Venkateswaran, Tomoko Ando (Actress/Theater Company ARICA, former member of the theater company Tenkei Gekijo)
Facilitator: Tadashi Uchino (Professor of Performance Studies at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, the University of Tokyo)
Theater reception opens 1h prior to the performance
Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza
(Kyoto University of Art and Design)
2-116, Uryuyama Kitashirakawa, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto
From Kitaoji Station, Kyoto Municipal Subway, take No.204 City Bus bound for Ginkakuji and get off at Kamihatecho Kyoto Zokei Univ.
No entry for preschoolers
Latecomers are admitted only during a suitable break in the performance
|Adult||Adv. ¥3,000 / Day ¥3,500|
|Youth, Student||Adv. ¥2,500 / Day ¥3,000|
|Senior||Adv. ¥2,500 / Day ¥3,000|
|High School Student
|Adv. ¥1,000 / Day ¥1,000|
|Pair||¥5,500 (advance only)|
Youth tickets → Up to 25
Senior tickets → 65 & Up