Marionette Theatre YOUKIZA, a Japanese cultural property with 380 years of history, worked with staff from the creative theatre group Youth Theatre of Vietnam to create a collaborative contemporary theatrical work. It has planned showings in Tokyo and Hanoi, with its first showing in Tokyo. The work dares to choose not a Japanese or Vietnamese work as its source, but something more universal or classical in nature, focusing its Asian qualities into something contemporary and experimental. Tradition and modernity, marionettes and humans, Japan and Vietnam―the production seeks to combine a variety of elements to create a wholly new form of expression, furthering understanding and cultural exchange between the two countries in the process. The staff from Vietnam－whose performing arts industry continues developing compared to Japan - also used the opportunity to improve their abilities.
Achievements of FY 2016 https://grant-fellowship-db.jfac.jp/en/grant/cc1611/
- Related Countries
- Japan, Vietnam
- Co-organizer(s), Cooperator(s)
- Youth Theatre of Vietnam
From the Organizer
This was the first collaborative work with another country in YOUKIZA’s 380-year history. While we’d heard about the state of the Vietnamese theatre world a year prior, there was a lot we couldn’t know without visiting there in person, and we learned a lot about each others’ traditions and ways of thinking not just by reading the work, but by working together through the creation process (for example, there are shared traditions in the use of kanji and respecting your elders). There were symposiums prior to the performance and talk panels held after each performance to raise awareness and understanding of the project. Through these collaborative efforts, Marionette Theatre YOUKIZA – steeped in Japanese cultural tradition - strove to find a new method of expression, with the result (in the form of a play) being a fusion of Asian cultures, the improvement of the Vietnamese staff’s abilities, and further development of the Japanese team’s leadership skills. Due to the large amount of time necessary for the creation process and costs of inviting creators from other countries to collaborate, realizing the project would have been impossible without the Japan Foundation’s financial assistance. Going forward, we are currently planning to take this first Tokyo performance to Vietnam and Europe, and are working to bring it to even more people and places going forward.