2014 / Japan Foundation / Lecture Series / Noh Theatre in 21st Century / March 13

JFLA Lecture Series 17

Noh Theatre in the 21st Century
Featuring: Tatsushige Udaka and Haruna Tanaka  

Thursday, March 13, 7:30PM

Noh is a major form of classical Japanese musical drama that has been performed since the 13th-14th century.

Its subjects are taken from history or classical literature, and it is structured around song and dance. Its most obvious characteristic is that the main actor performs while wearing a mask of exceptional beauty.

It is highly stylized and refined performing art that takes place upon a very simple stage.

A lecture and demonstration of Japanese traditional Noh theatre will be given by professional Noh actors Tatsushige Udaka and Haruna Tanaka.

They will perform a short dance and chant to showcase the distinctive features of Noh body movements while introducing the role of Noh masks and costumes.

The lecture will discuss Noh’s continued status as live performance art and how Noh actors of the 21st century connect to the traditional theatre form.

Program Contents*

– Basic knowledge and historical background of Noh performance and Noh theatre

– Introduction to the role of Noh masks and costumes

– Meaning behind distinctive features of body movement

– Short demonstration of dance and chanting

*Details may change. 

Date: Thursday, March 13, 7:30PM

Venue: The Japan Foundation, Los Angeles  (5700 Wilshire Blvd. # 100, Los Angeles, CA 90036)

Admission: Free

Lecturer/Performer Profiles

Tatsushige Udaka is a Noh actor from the Kongo School who started his career as a Kokata actor when he was three years old.  He has extensive teaching experience in Noh Theatre and takes part in almost 100 Noh plays per year.  Over the past decade, he has performed and given workshops and lecture-demonstrations not only in Japan, but also in South Korea, France, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Slovenia, Russia, and the U.S. 

Haruna Tanaka graduated with a degree in Movement Theatre from Pitzer College in Claremont, CA and earned her M.A. in Theatre Arts from Kyoto University of Art and Design.  She received her Instructor Certificate from the Kongo School in 2004, and has been Tatsushige’s assistant for his workshops and lecture-demonstrations abroad.  She also has teaching experience at universities in Kyoto and Aichi.

In Collaboration with

Pomona College Theatre for the Claremont Colleges

Mellon Foundation Elemental Arts

The Pacific Basin Institute, Pomona College

Asian Languages and Literatures, Pomona College

Asian Studies, Pomona College

The Oldenborg Center, Pomona College

Public Events Fund, Pomona College