Yurakucho is a popular place in Tokyo with reasonably-priced eateries and a laid-back atmosphere. People generally come to its tiny alleys to socialize and drink after dark. However, its image is changing slightly with the newly opened Alternative Theater on the seventh floor of the Yurakucho Center Building. This theater aims to offer a variety of interesting stage performances including non-verbal shows. This is going to give audiences a new kind of theater experience through project mapping, epic sword fights, great dance moves, and aerial acts.
This is not the first time that Japan had a non-verbal performance. GEAR is considered to be its first non-verbal performance which started in 2012 and showcased different stage acts without any dialogue. It is participated by world-class performers who create a lovely story in the form of dances, music, expressions, and images which tap the senses.
There are many advantages of non-verbal performances, such as providing an easy presentation that anyone can enjoy regardless of language skills. This can be done through visual, audio-visual, or silent stimuli. Using signs and symbols in doing a presentation is also a quick way of communicating messages in an easy to understand way, which is also helpful to the hard of hearing.
Alternative Theatre is a new cultural landmark in Yurakucho. It was founded by Kazutoshi Tanuma, who is also the president of Studio Alta in Shinjuku. The fact that most Tokyo theatres have been closed for renovation since 2016 in preparation for the upcoming 2020 Olympics gave him the chance to come up with a new kind of entertainment. His primary targets are overseas tourists who often look for things to do in the evening.
The theatre seats 410 people and also provides an area for 52 standing audiences. It opened on July 7th 2017 and provides a 70-minute samurai action drama titled Alata. The opening program was directed by Okamura, an experienced stage and film director. Since the show featured no language, it became easier for tourists to understand the different performances.
The production of the show is of high quality and staged at a reasonable price. It is said that if the show becomes a hit, then it will be taken to international standards and taken to places abroad where theatrical shows are well-received. Alata tells the story of a 21-year-old samurai who is known for his sword-fighting abilities. He falls into modern-day Tokyo and meets a cute office worker. There are performances twice a day at 8,000 yen per head. Take note that performance time varies.
The theatre is hoping to establish itself as a friendly place to all people around the world. It is planning on hiring more young actors who will be developed into stars in the process. The theatre is well supported with all the LED lighting, equipment for the acts, contraptions for light and sound as well as different stalls on the lobby selling various related merchandise. Feed your senses by watching this unique non-verbal show any day of the week this summer season in Japan!
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