‘Mermaids in the East – The Red Candle’ is a newly devised piece inspired by a Japanese tale ‘The Red Candle and the Mermaid’ by Ogawa Mimei (1882-1961) commonly known as ‘Japanese Andersen’. The way we tell the story is new and experimental pushing the boundaries of traditional methods taken in the UK and Japan. We take a minimalistic approach for the maximum theatrical effects accompanied by the music by traditional Japanese musical instruments.
We consider the work as a requiem for those who lost their lives in disasters. Our initial inspiration was the earthquake that hit Japan in 2011. However, the piece is echoing the grief caused by all other manmade and natural disasters that we had to experience.
We aim to introduce Japanese culture in an authentic way within an intimate space of theatre. By keeping the staging simple, we aim to communicate the spirit of this wonderful tale that tells us about the universal theme of life and death, the shared sadness of the world we live in. We very much hope that the impact that this tale gives the audience becomes an invitation to Japanese literature.
‘Mermaids in the East The Red Candle’ is also a part of our five year project ‘ 凛- Brilliance 2016-2020’ which is a series of theatrical performances based on Japanese tales.
As the year of the Olympic in Tokyo is approaching, there will be general increase of interest towards Japanese culture. Thus, we are planning to produce plays with the purpose of introducing authentic Japanese culture and aesthetics to the audience in Britain to deepen their understanding and insight towards Japan.