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Theater company Q by ICHIHARA Satoko ‘The Question of Faeries’ Online Tour

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 following the streaming of the stage edition (for China) and the new online edition (for Indonesia) collaborating with local cast, 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.

<Archive streaming (YouTube)>

June 21st (Mon) – 27th(Sun)

Indonesian version ‘The Question of Faeries’ (with Indonesian cast)


Talk session between China and Japan


Joint talk session with China, Indonesia and Japan



<About> This performance is over.

Schedule: May 29th(Sat)-30th(Sun), 2021
Streaming with Chinese surtitles

Schedule: May 29th(Sat)-30th(Sun), 2021

The stage edition of ‘The Question of Faeries’ will be streamed for 2days.

Language: Japanese with Chinese surtitles

Viewing fee: free


Local special web (in Chinese) : https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/6K8wmVrbiU9_6vPH6L6lSw

The stage edition of “The Question of Faeries” (with surtitles in 6 languages)

STAGE BEYOND BORDERS -Selection of Japanese Performances – Presented by the Japan Foundation

『The Question of Faeries』 https://youtu.be/svjSi3xsa80


Indonesian version Streaming

Schedule: May 30th(Sun)

15:30- (West Indonesian Time)/ 17:30- (Japanese Standard Time)

We will streaming the new online edition of ‘The Question of Faeries’ collaborating with local cast and using a part of the recoring of past online performances.

Language: Japanese and Indonesian with Indonesian surtitles

Viewing fee: free (reservation required)

Reservation (in Indonesian): bit.ly/RegistrasiMasalahPeri


Talk session

May 29th(Sat)18:00- (Chinese Standard Time) / 17:00- (Japanese Standard Time)

Talk session between Japan and China.

We will share and exchange the opinions about the situation in the theater world of each country and their cultural contexts. We will deepen understanding of the stage edition of “The Question of Faeries” based on the discussion.

Speakers: Zhang Yuan(Shanghai / Local producer), Shi Ke(Shanghai / Theater critic, Actor), aoaoing ensemble(Shanghai / Local theater company), Satoko Ichihara(Japan)

Streaming URL: https://is.gd/AB8Zgh (bilibili)


May 30th(Sun) After Indonesian version Streaming

Joint talk session with Japan, China and Indonesia.

What is “faeries” in this performance?

What are the objects dealt with as invisible in each society?

We will exchange each awareness of the problem that arises through the performance.

Speakers: Zhang Yuan(Shanghai /Producer),Shi Ke(Shanghai / Theater critic, Actor), aoaoing ensemble(Shanghai / local theater company), Muhammad Abe(Yogyakarta / Producer), Rebecca Kezia(Yogyakarta / Performing arts researcher, Producer), Arsita Iswardhani(Yogyakarta / Actor), Satoko Ichihara(Japan)

Interpreter: Kanoko Tamura (Art Translators Collective)

Reservation (same as Indonesian version Streaming): bit.ly/RegistrasiMasalahPeri

<Message, Profile>

I am looking forward to seeing how this performance will be perceived by the Chinese and Indonesian audiences and what kind of dialogue will happen.


Satoko Ichihara

Playwright, director,novelist and Artistic Director of Kinosaki International Arts Center(KIAC). Born 1988 in Osaka, raised in Fukuoka Japan.Studied theater at J.F. Oberlin University. Ichihara Satoko has led the theater company Q since 2011.She writes and directs plays that deal with human behavior, the physiology of the body, and the unease surrounding these themes, using her unique sense of language and physical sensitivity. 2011, Receives the Aichi Arts Foundation Drama Award with the play “Insects”. 2017, Nominated for finalist of 61st Kishida Kunio Playwriting Prize for “Favonia’s Fruitless Fable”. In 2019, she published her first collection of stories, Mamito no tenshi (Mamito’s Angel). Her latest work The Bacchae−Holstein Milk Cows, based on a Greek tragedy, premiered at Aichi Triennale 2019 and won the 64st Kishida Kunio Playwriting Prize . She is a Junior Fellow of The Saison Foundation.


Thanks to Precog’s invitation and recommendation, I had the opportunity to see Satoko Ichihara’s work “Questions of Fairies”. Satoko is a writer-director who dares to analyze herself and confront the invisible things in Japanese society today, and develop her own theatrical language. In this work, we will see a bizarre yet innovative combination of rakugo, concert, and seminar, which is an eye-opening experience. As one of the most talented emerging theatre creator, Satoko Ichihara’s new work “The Bacchae – Holstein Milk Cows” won the Kishida Kunio Playwriting Prize in Japan last year. Due to the language barrier, perhaps we cannot directly feel the keenness of her play’s language. Nevertheless, I do not want to categorize her unique style, which is still evolving, as simply something generated from one’s femininity and sensibility. There should be more to explore. The pandemic has forced theatre people all around the world to face many common challenges, but our communication must continue. We will meet online on Saturday night, May 29th, for a streaming of Satoko Ichihara’s work Questions of Fairies, followed by a live Q&A sessions.


Producer: Zhang Yuan (Shanghai, China)

Based in Shanghai, ZHANG Yuan is a curator, producer and writer in contemporary performing arts. By working with theatres, festivals, museums and art institutions in China and abroad, he organizes a number of performance projects, exhibitions, talks and workshops, facilitating the local contemporary performing arts scene and international collaborations. In 2020, he co-curated 2020: Twenty Years Towards a World Theatre, an exhibition in OCAT Shenzhen with archived contemporary performance in mainland China through the past 20 years. From 2017 to 2021, he worked as performing arts curator in Shanghai Ming Contemporary Art Museum (McaM) during which he curated performance seasons, presented and commissioned various performance projects and initiated international co-productions with festivals and institutions.


Question of Fairies is a strong performance by Satoko Ichihara, using humour and dark comedy as a tools to talk about intimate body parts and patriarchy culture that surrounds our everyday culture, without making judgement. The performance disrupt normativity by going deep into details that can shocks us and rethink about what we used to avoid to talk in public or what we think disgusting. Satoko’s wit in exploring her ideas through language and unexpected icons is a good example for theatre workers in Indonesia to find wittiness and fresh artistic language, without losing meaning.


Producer: Muhammad Abe (Yogyakarta, Indonesia)

Artist/actor/researcher/producer based in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. He is now director of Indonesia Dramatic Reading Festival (IDRF), platform to promote new Indonesian plays. With IDRF he also producing Asia Playwrights Meeting 2019 in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, hosting a group of playwrights from Southeast Asia and Japan. In 2019, he also produced First Date, Festival of Indonesian Plays in Ovalhouse London, UK, a festival to introduce Indonesian plays for public in London. In 2020, he produced platform to introduce new Asian plays in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, by introducing new publication of Asian Plays to the public. The program is planned to be held in few other countries but stopped because of the coronavirus. He is also part of artist collective Gymnastik Emporium, their work SKJ#2020 featured in Indonesia Dance Festival 2020. Beside producing performance, Muhammad Abe also organize the first edition of Indonesian Conference of Performance and Performing Art in 2020. Finishing undergraduate in History, and master in Performing Art Studies from Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta. Muhammad Abe interest is on history, performance studies, knowledge distribution through art, and promoting Indonesian contemporary culture through art. For every production, he emphasize the role of research and data for the production to create value of production, and also to valuate the production.

This Information is released on the website of “THEATRE for ALL” in four languages (Japanese, English, Chinese and Indonesian).

“The Question of Faeries” Special Page (THEATRE for ALL):https://theatreforall.net/movie/thequestionoffairies_online-tour



Playwright / Director: Satoko Ichihara


[Streaming with Chinese surtitles]

Performers: Kyoko Takenaka, Mayo Hyodo, Takako Yamamura (Seinendan) 


Piano: Ryo Sugimoto

Music Composer: Masashi Nukata (Tokyo Shiokoji / Nuthmique)

Set design: Tomomi Nakamura

Dramaturge: Masahiko Yokobori

Stage manager: Chinatsu Iwata

Lighting: Reiko Kawashima

Sound Effect: Kouji Shiina

Video: Nobuhiro Matsuzawa, Sou Hirota 

Company manager: Yoshiki Masuda

Editor: Yoshiyuki  Sakuragi


Streaming video as part of KYOTO EXPERIMENT 2018 Official Program (Presented by KYOTO EXPERIMENT)


Producer: Zhang Yuan

Co-presented by The Japan Foundation, Beijing

Chinese surtitle translation: Bolao, Liangjie

Chinese document translation: Gege Wu

Publicity: Fake Festival

Interpretation (talk session): Lin Shu

Special thanks: Lin Cuixi, Zhu Tianyi, Liu Gefei


[Indonesian version Streaming]

Performers: Uul Sjareefah Lail, Aik Vela

Video appearance: Sanae En, Kyoko Takenaka, Hanaka Terada, Kanako Nishida, Keisuke Hidaka (FUKAIPRODUCE-hagoromo), Takako Yamamura (Seinendan) , Tamari Yamane


Music Composer: Masashi Nukata (Tokyo Shiokoji / Nuthmique)

Piano(Recording): Ryo Sugimoto


Producer: Muhammad Abe

Indonesian Translation: Tomomi Yokosuka 

Video Crew: Yustiansyah Lesmana and Crew

Production Assistant: BM Anggana

Publicity Design: Makhrus Amri

Publisher (Social Media) : Amelia Rizqi Fitriani


Company Manager : Makiko Yamazato (Q)


Producer: Tamiko Ouki (precog)

Production Manager: Yuina Baba (precog)

Production Assistant: Nanami Endo (precog)


Production: Q


Supported by Arts Council Tokyo (Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture)


Planning and Production Management by precog co., LTD.

Executive Producer: Akane Nakamura

Executive Officer/Publicity & Branding Director: Kao Kanamori

Senior Producer: Kumi Hiraoka

Chief Producer: Mai Hyodo

Chief Administrator: Yuka Morita