Friday, April 30, 2010

The Old Kabuki Theatre

It's Friday and Allan has been in Korea for a week. He'll be back on Wednesday, cinqo do Mayo.

Yesterday, my Tuesday English group took a fieldtrip to Tokyo to see the Kabuki Theatre building which will be torn down soon and replaced with a new structure. Kabuki is the traditional Japanese stage performance using only male actors.

Our first stop in Tokyo was a demonstration of block printing (ukioye). Using a series of carved blocks, a picture is created. Paint is applied to the block, then a paper is laid over it and the paint transfers when the page is rubbed.

The room was a gallery with a series of prints showing views of Mt. Fuji and famous Japanese bridges.

After the artist demonstration, audience members were offered the opportunity to try the technique. You remember Brian and I did block printing in Kyoto, so Ayuko gave it a try while Emiko and Toshiko watched. Our fourth member, Momoko, was unable to make the trip.
Ayuko did one block (one color). It was a set of ocean waves and it looks pretty good, don't you think?

Next was a quick stop in a Japanese paper store were I couldn't resist some fat-cat note paper and a package of postcards.

At the theatre, a number of people (myself included) were photographing the traditional Japanese building. It's just 50 years old, but is no longer earthquake sound. The final performances were sold out for weeks, and the last took place Wednesday night.

I think some part of the entrance will be saved or reproduced for the new theatre.

It's a little sad when traditional architecture is destroyed and replaced with some glass and metal structure (which becomes a traditional structure itself when enough time passes).

The new theatre will be 29 stories tall.
This is the theatre billboard.
In the Ginza district, we did a little shopping and had lunch.

These unusual roses were on display outside a flower shop.
In a store called Wako and I spotted a nice bag for a mere 287,000 ¥ (that's over $3,000).
We did some window shopping, including Mikimoto. Do you recognize that name? Think naturals pearls - very expensive natural pearls.
Then came tulip art. There were three blocks of 'green' images done with tulip petals.
Fortunately, since they were so large, each had a small poster showing what it looked like, electric cars, recycling, save the earth, environmental stuff.

Finally, we got to the Hama-rikyu Garden. Toshiko fixed me up with an English language audio guide (the brochure called it a 'ubiquitous communicator') and we walked some more. Below is a three-hundred year old pine tree. It has 'tree crutches' to hold up the branches.

Today, I went to the mess (dining room) for ribeye steak and lobster tail. It was 'Spouse Appreciation Day' and my friend Chris' husband Randy Christ stood in for my spouse. The lunch, including baked potato, salad, soup, drink and dessert was $4.25 (can't beat that with a stick).

Tonight is dinner out with our Friday night group. Allan is not with us, so we are having Indian food (he doesn't like curry, so this is a good time to get some).

1 comment:

  1. Fabulous post here. I love theater and just collect my Theater dance dress from at PIJ. I really love to read your post and now I look forward for your next update. Thanks.