Given American Theatre's May/June issue focus on Japan, it seemed valuable to share a few noteworthy recent Global Connections projects involving Japanese theatre and culture: Ako Dachs, founding artistic director of Amaterasu Za, translated and adapted three of Monzaemon Chikamatsu
's double-suicide plays, Courier of Hell, Double-Suicide at Sonezaki, and Love Suicides at Amijima into one play, Courier of Love.
One of its sources is the seven-volume compilation of 305 ancient stories related to tea, tea-drinking and tea culture, by Shigenori Chikamatsu
(20.) Murase Y, Maeda S, Yamada H, Ohkado A, Chikamatsu
K, Mizuno K, et al.
Shimazawa, M., Chikamatsu
, S., Morimoto, N., Mishima, S., Nagai, H., Hara, H., 2005.
et al., "Effects of propolis on cell growth and gene expression in HL-60 cells," Journal of Ethnopharmacology, vol.
But his name doesn't live up to the name "Yosaku."' 'Yosaku' is not a random choice, but the hero of a famous play by the renowned dramatist, Chikamatsu
In an effort to help Western readers place this new figure in their mental map of world drama, and doubtless also to indicate his significance, he has from time to time been referred to by some of the still few Western critics who have written about him as the "Arab Aristophanes" (8) Theater scholars may well be reminded of the attempt by early scholars of the Japanese dramatist Chikamatsu
to gain him respectability in the West by calling him the "Japanese Shakespeare" (9) Like Ibn Daniyal, Chikamatsu
was not only "Oriental," but more questionable still, a writer for the puppet stage, in this case the Japanese bunraku.
In I Am a Cat, a character who often visits Kushami tries to imitate different voices, a boatman, a geisha, recounting the staging of one of the Japanese dramatist Monzaemon Chikamatsu
's (1653-1725) most famous bunraku-play The Love Suicide ai Amijima (1720), also performed in kabuki-theater, where all characters are today performed by men.
For example, previous productions include three plays from the 1920s by Polish playwright Stanislaw Witkiewicz (produced in 2001-2003)-their company name is inspired by his Metaphysics of a Two-Headed Calf-George Bernard Shaw's Major Barbara (2006), and Japanese dramatist Monzaemon Chikamatsu
's Drum of the Waves of Horikawa (2007).