International producer and arts and culture writer Cindy Sibilsky, guest editor of this issue on Japanese theatre, says that while she’s seen engaging work on stages around the world, she was “totally spellbound by the unique and diverse offerings of Japanese theatre today” during her time in Japan working on her two stories. She adds, “I have been equally obsessed with theatre and Japanese culture since childhood, but I was utterly blown away upon encountering the richness and diversity of the myriad spectrum of Japanese theatre being performed—all with a penchant for perfection. It became my mission to promote this enthralling theatre scene abroad.”
Nobuko Tanaka, who pens this issue’s look at the future of theatre in Japan, has been a regular contributor to The Japan Times, covering contemporary drama and dance for the country’s leading English-language newspaper, for almost 20 years. Tanaka says this assignment offered her “a rare opportunity to try and introduce readers to the whole rich and wonderfully varied panorama of Japanese contemporary theatre in 2019.” She also appreciated the chance to explore the Japanese theatre scene’s “current limitations—mainly self-generated—and possible ways forward to reach a wider international audience.”
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