Two of the greatest stars of Japan’s kabuki theater reveal the actual acting techniques used in this most difficult and splendid of theater forms. Onoe Shoroku II and Onoe Baiko VII discuss and demonstrate their craft in conversation with the well-known author of works on Asian arts, Faubion Bowers and show some of the gestures and nuances of body language that communicate specific emotions and situations. Baiko, a famous player of women’s roles, performs a classic woman’s speech in full costume and heavy white-face make-up, and then does the same scene again in plain face and simple clothes. He shows how the Japanese fan speaks in its own language. He and Shoroku act out a fight scene; Shoroku demonstrates one of kabuki’s elaborate exit walk sequences, and compares different ways of making stylized gestures.
A short Noh theatre scene from the classic "Atsumori" play. Recorded at the annual recital by the TODAI KANZE-KAI, the association of Noh-play at the University of Tokyo. Date: Saturday, December 18, 2010