I am invisible. To end up being made invisible Is the same as being invisible.
Just because something is invisible does not mean it does not exist. Performed by Theater Company Q, The Question of Faeries was inspired by the 2016 massacre of residents of a facility for the disabled in the city of Sagamihara, Kanagawa Prefecture. It applies the name "faeries" to the objects of discrimination and hate in contemporary Japanese society that are sometimes invisible, and makes them visible. It was performed as one of the official programs of Kyoto Experiment in 2018. Taking up the exceedingly human issues of facial beauty/ugliness, eugenics, and prenatal diagnosis, it relativizes them by adopting the non-human perspective of a mutant cockroach and symbiotic bacteria, and takes a radical look at human life and sex. It consists of three parts: Part 1, titled "Ugly Woman," in a rakugo format; Part 2, titled "Cockroach," in the form of a popular song show; and Part 3, titled "Mangurt," in the form of a weird seminar. All three parts taking mutually different forms are performed almost entirely alone by Kyoko Takenaka. Her unique and bizarre performance makes it impossible for the audience to turn their backs on the problems before their eyes, while sometimes even giving them a feeling of visceral repulsion. In addition to having a few more actors, the online edition changes Part 1 into an online conversation, Part 2 into a musical-type video work, and Part 3 into a web seminar. The audience is likewise pulled into the performance on the other side of the screen in a different way. For the online tour of The Question of Faeries, we are holding a talk session coinciding with the showing of the online edition, with the participation of local producers, critics, and researchers. Perspectives on issues such as gender, facial beauty/ugliness, and disabilities treated in work, and the normal outlook as the premise in thought about them, depend on the cultural background of the audience. The talk session will assist better understanding of the work by presenting the context of contemporary Japanese society, which lies behind the work, to the audience. It will also pick up and discuss reactions, including alienation and backlash, from local audiences whose social context differs from that of Japanese audiences, in order to shed light on "what cannot be seen" from the standpoint of the respective contexts of Japan and the locality. This practice will presumably prompt re-examinations of outlooks on value among the creators and audiences.