Thursday, January 19, 2023

Japanese puppet performance AKUTAGAWA in Pittsburgh, February 5; puppeteer panel discussion on February 7.


Pittsburgh CAPA will host two performances of AKUTAGAWA on February 5, followed by a puppeteer panel discussion on February 7. A synopsis of the performance, from the Japan America Society of Pennsylvania:
AKUTAGAWA is a stage portrait of Ryunosuke Akutagawa, father of the modern Japanese short novel and author of In a Grove, the basis of Akira Kurosawa’s landmark 1950 film Rashomon. Told through the traditional puppetry style kuruma ningyo blended with dynamic video images, AKUTAGAWA is an amalgam of five of his famous short stories—including Rashomon, Hell Screen (Jigokuhen), The Dragon, Toshishun and Kappa. The show explores the author’s artistic insight and fragile emotional state. This production is made through an international collaboration between puppeteers Koryu Nishikawa V (Tokyo) and Tom Lee (Chicago), with live music by Yukio Tsuji (New York).

AKUTAGAWA is supported by Arts Council Tokyo (Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture) and The Osaka Community Foundation / anonymous fund No.22.
Tickets are available online at $28 for the general public and $18 for students or those under 18. The JASP says of the puppeteer panel discussion on the 7th:
Koryu Nishikawa V and Tom Lee will join Pittsburgh-based puppeteer David English in a panel discussing how puppetry can be a vehicle to express art and literature, as well as the cultural differences in the medium.

Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts is located at 111 9th Street downtown (map).