All About Japan

CITA: Experimental Tokyo Theater

| Theater , Tokyo

Established in Tokyo in 2013, the International Centre for Theatre Arts (CITA) has toured more than six countries with its award-winning productions and workshops, traveling from Tokyo to such places as Korea, Colombia and Iran.

More experimental than conventional, CITA shows make innovative use of props, video projection and physical theater to present new visions of famous plays such as Richard III or breathe life into lesser-known works such as Nikolai Gogol's satirical short story The Nose, which CITA performed at the Keochang International Festival of Theatre (KIFT) in Korea in 2015. In each case, the final performance is a result of collaboration, experimentation and play.

The company performs as much abroad as it does in Japan, and you have to keep on your toes to spot the next production. Its current project, 重力/Earthbound, has been co-written and devised by CITA, inspired by the pioneering rocket development work of Hideo Itokawa and his colleagues in the 1950s—juxtaposed against the story of chess grandmaster Bobby Fischer. Like all of CITA's work, it is an amalgamation of themes and genres, combining visual and physical theater even as it interweaves documentary and fiction into a dreamlike state, aiming for something epic in scale, yet intimate in emotion.

CITA founder James Sutherland trained at the New Zealand Drama School, an has since taught and directed across four continents. Between 2007 and 2012 he was responsible for building a three-year physical theater course at East 15 Acting School in London, and he has worked on major motion pictures, television and theater productions as a director, performer and choreographer in both New Zealand and Japan.

重力/Earthbound

重力/Earthbound will be presented March 13, 2017 at Oji Sho-gekijo in northern Tokyo. In addition to Sutherland, the cast includes Tatsuya Yasumoto—whose skills range from theater and dance to clowning, gymnastics and puppeteering—as well as actor-narrator Bob Werley, actress Hiroko Kariya, magician Tanba Tamba, actor and theater instructor Shoichi Ayada, and actress Kana Kobayashi.

Date: March 13, 2017
Time: 7 p.m.
Address: B1F 1-14-4 Oji, Kita-ku, Tokyo
Access: 5 minutes north from Oji Station north exit
Reservations & Information: http://internationalcita.com/contact-cita/

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