Unlimited Pictures and Video of KyogenActors in Devil Costumes Hang Out
Take as many pictures as you like of actors and their performance. The Shigeyama Sengoro Family, Kyoto Kyogen performers, are holding a one-day event where visitors can take an unlimited number of pictures and videos on November 4 at the Kyoto Prefectural Citizen's Hall ALTI in Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto. Visitors are allowed to freely upload the pictures on SNS, social networking service sites that have registered membership, including Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and others. The family is encouraging the public to share "Kyogen," or a traditional Japanese theatrical comedy, to the world via "#インスタ狂言," which is translated as "#instakyogen" in English.
The event is titled "Kyogen De Insta!" On that day, nearly 20 actors from the Shigeyama Family will gather. They include the "Hanagata-generation," or a young star-Kyogen performers, like Sengoro, Shigeru, Motohiko and others, and their children also. Once the doors open at 2:00 p.m., Noh comedians attired in "Tarokaja," or a common name for a manservants in Kyogen, a master, devils and other characters will hang around the lobby, like characters in a theme park. Visitors are allowed to take pictures with them and to get their autographs.
Two or three Kyogen programs will be presented from 3:30 p.m. Visitors are also allowed to come close to the stage and take pictures of the actors from a short distance. The atmosphere will differ from usual Kyogen performances. If there are shouts of "I couldn't take good pictures," or other calls from the audience during the performance, the actors may provide an impromptu repeat of highlight scenes from the play.
This unlimited-photos event had been held every few years since 1997, and this time is being held after six years. Such an event, where visitors are allowed to freely take pictures of this classical performing art, is rare in Japan. Event promoters said, "This event is just like the Shigeyama Family. When we held it for the first time in 1997, smartphones had not yet appeared. So QuickSnap (a single-use camera with a lens and film) was sold at the venue. Now we live in an age when people can transmit information immediately. We want visitors to contribute to SNS one after the other."
Anyone can enter after paying the 4,000-yen general entrance fee. Those who are or become members of the "Club SOJA," or a fan club of the Sengoro Family, which has a 2,000 yen annual fee, can also have experience dressing in Kyogen costume. The event is scheduled to end at 4:30 p.m.(Translated by Mie Hiuzon, Psyche et l’Amour, Inc.)