大谷賢治郎 Kenjiro Otani （演劇活動家・俳優）
By ANDREI MEDINA, GMA News July 27, 2014 4:01pm
It all began with the resonant beating of drums and a white cloth hanging from the ceiling, barely draped over the stage at the PETA-Phinma Theater in Quezon City Saturday night.
Then the cloth fell, solemnly signaling the start of “Ayanasu” (“Woven”), a story of interweaving emotions felt by survivors of the Great Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami in 2011.
The play focuses on the various struggles a Japanese family faced during and after the calamity through an improvised non-verbal performance.
In silence, the performers were able to bring out raw emotion for every scene, which was further enhanced by the mood-swaying lighting and music. There were times when the lighting was dimmed, suggesting a more serious tone, while strong lighting highlighted the importance of certain scenes.
The musical scoring was one of the strong points of the production, as well as “Ayanasu's” astonishing choreography.
I noticed that there was always an interval of light and dramatic music obviously paired to match the mood with similar interchanging scenes.
Still, the performers were able to glide gracefully on the stage with their snappy movements and precision choreography.
Amid all this a white cloth was used to symbolize various things, including life – through a newborn baby – and death.
One of the best scenes was probably when the cloth was used by four of the performers to wrap around the fifth performer at center stage. The scene ended in an abrupt yet touching group hug.
But what I liked most about the play was the regular intervals of comedy which prompted the audience to a hearty laugh or two.
This factor made it a diverse performance which allowed the audience to have fun, feel sad and admire the tenacity of the human spirit after earth-shaking tragedy.
All in all, “Ayanasu” is a fun play with no boring moments. It banks on its simple yet amusing comedy to lure audiences to the value of family, then delivers the symbolic and serious scenes of fortitude later on to make a strong point. — BM, GMA News
“Ayanasu,” directed by Kenjiro Otani, was presented by the Dora Theater Company, Japan in partnership with the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) Theater Center and Japan Foundation, Manila to celebrate Philippine-Japanese friendship month.