The Written Face
In Japanese theater women’s roles are traditionally played by men. The man playing the woman’s role, the Onnagata, does not imitate the woman, as in the West, but tries to capture her significance. He need not stick close to his model, but draws far more from his own identity – a shift of value takes place, which is nonetheless not a step beyond. THE WRITTEN FACE is an attempt to offer an insight into the Japanese Kabuki star Tamasaburo Bando, one of the last defenders of this ancient and disappearing performing tradition.
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