Samurai Sword Soul, celebrating their tenth anniversary, are presenting UTSUYO KAKURYO: PASSING BY THE OTHER SHORE at the HERE! Theater. The performances continue thru February 24th at the theater which is located at 145 6th Avenue; more information and tickets here.
Photographer Brian Krontz and I attended the dress rehearsal where Brian shot these production images. The play, performed in Japanese with English titles, combines elements of dance, sword-fighting, film, and Bunraku puppetry in a story that is part domestic drama and part morality play. It's also something of a ghost story, and is peopled by Ninjas and wandering warriors. Honor, factional conflict, and revenge are major themes, and the tale unfolds with humorous interjections as the characters make life-or-death decisions.
Above: Yoshi Amao is the founding force behind Samurai Sword Soul
Above: some of the actors involved in the narrative are (left to right) Lisa Itabashi, Yu-Taniguchi, Jiro Ueno, Shieri Yamafuji, Asuka Morinaga, Atsunori Umihei Hiyamizu, and Koji Nishiyama.
Following are some of Brian Krontz's images from the dress rehearsal. Click on each photo to enlarge:
Yoshihisa Kuyama, as a wandering rogue warrior
Yoshi with Takemi Kitamura, a beauteous spirit
Beware the Ninja!
Lisa Itabashi and Jiro Ueno
Yoshi's the victor...but the fight is far from over
Atsunori Umihei Hiyamizu
Lisa Itabashi and Koji Nishiyama
Yoshi with Jiro Ueno
Above: Yu-Taniguchi and Yoshi Amao
Umihei and Takemi
All photography by Brian Krontz.
Please help Samurai Sword Soul reach their Kickstarter goal by making a donation in any amount here. Arigato!