There are few cabaret restaurants in Tokyo that provide a glimpse into Japan’s history channeled through modern dance. With an all-star cast of experienced dance performers, Kaguwa restaurant delivers a night of visual surprises. Situated in the heart of Roppongi, one of Tokyo’s entertainment districts, Kaguwa’s exterior looks like a traditional wooden shop with an old style signboard.
There are 2 shows at 6 and 9 in the evening daily, as well as a matinee on weekends. As each show is usually packed, it is recommended to make reservations in advance. Besides ordering off the a la carte menu on the day itself, orders for bento sets may also be made beforehand. There are options for set menus with a free flow of beer and spirits. The performing groups switch out on different days; a chart of the stars and their schedules is printed next to the menu. Additionally, some members of the cast socialize and entertain diners before the start of the show. It was nice watching them crack jokes and pose in their costumes.
Kaguwa brings your senses on a wild ride, with moving platforms, trapeze and suspension acts, and amazing power-packed performances on a stellar set. Starting with the Oiran 花魁, which was used to describe the courtesan era, the Kaguya cast breezes through the feudal era to the roaring 20s to WWII to the 70s and contemporary times. From a Doraemon feature to a tragic love story to vampires and opium, you are sure to be entertained for the whole hour of dramatic mime and dance. It does not matter if you don’t speak Japanese as dance transcends verbal communication! Another great point is the audience engagement and interaction. Imagine how excited we were to see a guy picked from the audience chasing a feather-light piece of tissue paper.
The performers do a great job of changing in and out of their costumes. In a blink of an eye, they’re back up on stage. A noteworthy point is that some or most of the female cast in the line-up are transsexuals. They are not only pretty but also artistically skilled. At the end of the show, some of these members were revealed to be candidates in a “new-half” pageant, which is a beauty pageant for transsexuals. Way to go!
Upon request or additional tipping, the troupe may oblige the audience members with individual or group photos.
Overall, it was a thoroughly eye-opening experience and definitely worth a visit.
・Top 100 Things to Do in Roppongi, Famous for its Daytime and Nighttime Attractions, in 2018
・Three Restaurants With Maiko Performances to Fulfil your Kyoto Experience
・Japan’s all girl theatre extravaganza – Takarazuka Revue!