Time’s Journey Through a Room

Toshiki Okada’s follow-up to Ground and Floor portrays the living’s envy of the dead

Whenever Toshiki Okada publishes a new play in a literary magazine he creates a storm, while his sharply directed productions with subtly responsive performers have attracted attention on the theater circuits around world. This new play, written and directed by Okada, premieres at Kyoto Experiment before touring to major international festivals. In Ground and Floor, Okada previously referenced the elegance of Japanese Noh theater to construct a world that traversed the living and the dead. Taking this further, his new play portrays “the living’s envy of the dead.”

Following on from his earlier exploration of new musical formats through overlapping the music of the band Sangatsu with the live voices of actors, Okada here works with Kyoto-based visual artist Tsuyoshi Hisakado to create an on-stage environment of sound based on field recordings. Hisakado is known for his theatrical installations that delicately evoke time and memory. Together with Hisakado, chelfitsch now takes audiences further into the relationship between invisible sound, the body, language, and space.

North Hall, ROHM Theatre Kyoto
Japanese with English Subtitles


chelfitsch was founded in 1997 by Toshiki Okada, who writes and directs all of the company’s productions. Named after a deliberate mispronunciation of the English word “selfish,” chelfitsch began to refine its textual aesthetic to reflect the colloquial language of contemporary youth culture. With Five Days in March (premiered in 2004 and awarded the prestigious Kunio Kishida Award) the company began to juxtapose a noisy choreography derived from everyday mannerisms with its texts. The company’s international debut took place in 2007 when Five Days in March was invited to Kunstenfestivaldesarts in Brussels. The works of chelfitsch have been presented to great acclaim at leading international theater festivals and venues throughout Europe, North America, and Asia. In 2011, Hot Pepper, Air Conditioner, and Farewell Speechh received the critics’ award from the Association québécoise des critiques de théâtre for the 2010-2011 season. Chelfitsch has also recently received commissions from overseas festivals, such as for Ground and Floor by Kunstenfestivaldesarts in 2013 and roSuper Premium Soft Double Vanilla Rich by Theater der Welt 2014.

Writer and DirectorToshiki Okada
Sound and set designTsuyoshi Hisakado
CastIzumi Aoyagi, Mari Ando, Yo Yoshida
Stage managerKoro Suzuki
Stage manager assistantChikage Yuyama
Sound directorNorimasa Ushikawa
Sound operatorAkino Hayashi, Ken Takashio
Lighting directorTomomi Ohira (ASG)
Lighting operatorSota Yamamoto (ASG)
CostumeKyoko Fujitani(FAIFAI)
English translationAya Ogawa
Surtitles operatorHsu PinHsiang
Assistant directorYuto Yanagi
Publicity photographyMasumi Kawamura
Publicity designAkira Sasaki
Video documentation directionTakaki Sudo
Video documentationRyo Mikami, Mikihiro Endo, Kim Song Gi
Production managerAkane Nakamura, Tamiko Ouki, Nana Koetting, Mai Hyodo (all for precog), Azumi Komoto (ROHM Theatre Kyoto)
Asocciated productionprecog
Co-produced byKyoto Experiment / ROHM Theatre Kyoto, Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels), Festival d’Automne à Paris, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm Frankfurt, FFT Düsseldorf, La Bâtie – Festival de Genève, HAU Hebbel am Ufer (Berlin), SPRING Performing Arts Festival Utrecht, In co-operation with Nishi-Sugamo Arts Factory, Suitengu Pit, Kyoto Art Center Artist in Studio Program
Presented byKyoto Experiment


  • chelfitsch

    Hot Pepper, Air Conditioner, and the Farewell Speech

  • chelfitsch

    Ground and Floor