ACM Theatre

Original Planning Performances

July 29 (Fri) to September 10 (Sat), 2011

Play x Pray Project - Making Mito Happy Again, Turning the Town into a Theater -

Performed by:
Acting Company Mito (ACM), Engeki Jimusho (theater office) '99, Performance Groupe Kimitojacuzzi, Professional Foul,
Heart Dream Shoppers, etc.

Art Tower Mito (ATM) Plaza, ATM Contemporary Art Gallery, sites around Mito City In this new project, dramatic works and readings will be performed continuously throughout the city of Mito at various sites, including the Art Tower Mito (ATM) Plaza and the Contemporary Art Gallery, the dozen or so Michi-no-eki (roadside stations) located within the city, and such locations as restaurants, cafes, and bars. The Acting Company Mito (ACM) is coordinating with local acting groups to give simultaneous, multiple readings of works and performances of plays over a six-week period from July to September. With the cooperation of the Mito Chamber of Commerce and Industry and local shopping street associations, plays and readings will be held with the aim of enlivening the energy level of the city streets, offering Mito citizens the chance to make new acquaintances and exchanges.

Cooperation: Mito Chamber of Commerce and Industry

September 11 (Sun), 2011 / ACM Theatre

Performance by Actress Kyoko MAYA
"The Power of Art - Between Celebratory Words and Memorials for the Dead"

Directed by: Kenichi KASAI
Performed by: Kyoko MAYA

Kyoko MAYA, who appeared in last year's performance of "Talks by an Actress about Japanese Literature" at the ACM Theatre, expressed a wish to perform again, without compensation, in order "to raise the spirits of the people of quake-stricken Mito." The September performance is the fulfillment of that desire. She will do a reading of the 10th Night from Yume Juya (Ten Nights Dream) by Soseki NATSUME, as well as Tale of Acquaintances of Masako SHIRASU from Hana Kuyo (Flower Memorial Offering), a contemporary Noh work. She will also carry out a dialogue with the animation director Kenichi KASAI. The performance will show how devoted MAYA is to the city of Mito.

September 17 (Sat) to 19 (Mon, national public holiday), 2011 / ACM Theatre

ACM Theatre Reopening Commemorative Performance “Shin Bakumatsu Junjyoden"

Written by: Kohei TSUKA
Directed by: Ritsuo TOSHIMA (Acting Company Mito (ACM))
Performed by:
Acting Company Mito (Ryo SHIOTANI, Ritsuo TOSHIMA, Matomo OUCHI,Yusuke KOBAYASHI, Koji SAWADA), et al.

Was Soji OKITA of the Shinsengumi (a special police force in the Bakumatsu period, the waning years of the shogunate in the mid-19th century) really a woman? That novel concept is the source of the unique take on the Shinsengumi as presented in the masterpiece Bakumatsu play by Kohei TSUKA. The energetic stage play is an apt choice for the post-quake reopening of the ACM Theatre, and the Acting Company Mito (ACM) is equal to the task thanks to its fervent hopes for recovery.

November 3 (Thu), 2011 / Concert Hall ATM

Shinosuke TATEKAWA Solo Show

Performed by: Shinosuke TATEKAWA

Shinosuke TATEKAWA, a rakugo (traditional Japanese humorous storytelling) artist, constantly presents himself with new challenges so as to evolve. With his unique perspective, he often comments on modern times. ATM is pleased to present a solo show with this artist, who has breathed new life into the world of rakugo, performing both classic and new works.

November 20 (Sun), 2011 / ACM Theatre

Yorozu Kyogen Mito Performance 2011 + Lecture

Performed by: Man NOMURA, Manzo NOMURA, et al.

In order to deepen the audience's knowledge and increase their enjoyment of kyogen (classical comic theater), the program includes an appreciation lecture and performances of two works. A Living National Treasure, Man NOMURA and Manzo NOMURA IX, will present "competitive performances." The Nomura family's involvement with kyogen goes back to the early 1700s. Selected and supported by the Agency for Cultural Affairs as one of 2011's "Creativity Transmission Activities by Distinguished Theaters and Concert Halls."

December 4 (Sun), 2011 / ACM Theatre

"Talks by an Actress about Japanese Literature" #3
Mayumi WAKAMURA Talks about Kanoko OKAMOTO

Performed by: Mayumi WAKAMURA and one other

"Never have I seen such beautiful series of letters between father and son after the death of the mother." - Yasunari KAWABATA in the foreword to "Haha no Tegami (Mother's Letters)"The third installment of the popular series, "Talks by an Actress about Japanese Literature," has the actress Mayumi WAKAMURA recounting the story of the writer Kanoko OKAMOTO, who was the mother of the artist Taro OKAMOTO. She will present two works: "Oshaku (Child Geisha)," a novel illustrating the novelist's own creative process in her work, and "Haha no Tegami (Mother's Letters)," containing letters sent between the three members of the family: Kanoko, her son Taro, and her husband Ippei OKAMOTO. With 2011 marking the 100th anniversary of Taro's birth, this is an appropriate time to enjoy the literary world of his mother Kanako, who had a significant influence on his life.

January 11 (Wed), 2012 / ACM Theatre

"Anna Karenina" by Leo Tolstoy

Directed by: Eiji KAKU
Performed by:
Komaki KURIHARA, Hideyuki AKABANE, Masaru IKEDA, Michie TERADA, Kishiko YONEKURA, Chisa NISHIYAMA,

A dramatization of the immortal work by the great literary genius Tolstoy, who filled his novel with musings about art, religion, and philosophy, posing questions about the meaning of true human happiness, the nature of God, and love. Having performed a broad variety of heroines in the past, Komaki KURIHARA has been invited to play the main character Anna, Come appreciate the magnificent world created by Tolstoy.

February 3-5 (Fri-Sun), February 10-12 (Fri-Sun), 2012 / ACM Theatre

ACM THEATRE PRODUCE "A Midsummer Night's Dream" Written by William Shakespeare

Translated by: Kazuko MATSUOKA
Directed by: Shintaro MORI
Performed by: Members of Acting Company Mito, et al.

It may be winter, but a hot summer's night is coming! Following last year's highly-acclaimed performance of "12 Angry Men" at the ACM Theatre, the stage director Shintaro MORI is ready for his next challenge: Shakespeare's masterpiece comedy, "A Midsummer Night's Dream" The cast, which includes members of Acting Company Mito (ACM) and others chosen by audition, will place the city of Mito under its magic spell for a boisterous two weeks. MORI's delicate and sophisticated direction will create an unforgettable "A Midsummer Night's Dream" that can be enjoyed by children and adults alike.
Selected and supported by the Agency for Cultural Affairs as one of 2011's "Creativity Transmission Activities by Distinguished Theaters and Concert Halls."

Performance date not yet fixed

Shota SHUNPUTEI Solo Show

Performed by] Shota SHUNPUTEI

Shota SHUNPUTEI, popular for his bright and energetic speaking style, has captured a broad following of supporters because of the way he youthfully re-interprets classic works in a modern fashion. His upcoming solo show at ACM Theatre actually marks the second time he will have appeared at Art Tower Mito (ATM), following a surprise cameo performance in the "TATEKAWA Shinosuke Solo Show" in the spring of 2010.

Performance date not yet fixed

ACM Bookmobile

Performing artists: Acting Company Mito (ACM), et al.

A series of performances throughout the year held in various places around Mito (and not just limited to theater spaces). The actors, primarily members of Acting Company Mito (ACM), will present readings and perform plays in a friendly, accessible manner.

(1) "Kenji's Trunk - Collection of Fairy Tales by Kenji MIYAZAWA"

Written by: Kenji MIYAZAWA
Performed by: Ryo SHIOTANI (Acting Company Mito)
Art Tower Mito (ATM) Plaza

(2) "What We Talk About When We Talk About Love"

Written by: Raymond CARVER
Translated by: Haruki MURAKAMI
Performed by: Ritsuo TOSHIMA (Acting Company Mito)
ATM Contemporary Art Gallery

(3) "The Little Prince"

Written by: Antoine DE SAINT-EXUPERY
Performed by: Matomo OUCHI (Acting Company Mito), et al.

Educational Activities

June to July 2011

Acting Company Mito (ACM) Kindergarten Visitation Performances

Members of the Acting Company Mito (ACM), hoping to bring smiles back to the faces of young children still experiencing anxiety after the earthquake disaster of March 11, will tour several kindergartens throughout Mito City to give performances of theatrical works and to interact with the children. Several works from ACM's standard repertoire will be presented, including "Suteki na Sannin-gumi (A Wonderful Trio)" and "Tomodachi-ya (Friends)," along with readings of picture books.

September 2011 to March 2012

Mito Citizens' Theater Institute

This school consists primarily of workshops, each led by a different instructor with special expertise, to enable participants to experience dramatic theater, move their bodies, and enunciate words, among others. In addition, other activities will be coordinated with planned events at Art Tower Mito (ATM), with stage directors giving acting workshops, and talks given to deepen understanding of works being performed, so as to allow participants to learn more about the theater from multiple angles.

October to November 2011

Dramatic Performances for Grade Schoolers
(Visitations and Performances by Acting Company Mito)

Since fiscal 2003, the Acting Company Mito (ACM) has conducted this program to let children in Mito discover and experience the fun of dramatic theater and the importance of words through the actual viewing of performances. Over three years, ACM will have visited 34 unicipal elementary schools in Mito City. The play to be performed this year-"Run, Melos!"-is the same that was performed as last year, and will be shown at 12 schools around town. [Co-organizer] Mito City Board of Education

October 2011 to March 2012

Mito Children's Theater Academy

Lecturered by: Hirohisa HASEGAWA

Designed for 4th to 8th graders The purpose of the Theater Academy is to get children to experience and learn about theater as a "cooperative art." The classes concentrate on the three main pillars of drama: speaking, moving the body, and conducting dialogue. The graduation performance for the six-month program is scheduled for March 2012. Creative programs for the academy graduates will also be enhanced.

Grant: The Regional Creation Foundation

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