Noh Reimagined 2018 will examine Noh theatre in light of current neuroscience and contemporary arts. To do this, we will explore the unique dramaturgy of Mugen Noh, as conceived by the fourteenth-century playwright Zeami.
Mugen Noh involves dream states or visions, with the main actor playing a ghost or god in the dream of a monk, transporting audiences to a world of illusion. The festival will look at these surreal elements of Noh, along with its use of time, space and symbolism, through multidisciplinary collaborations.
This includes two specialists in neuroaesthetics. Professor Semir Zeki will oversee a colour shadow projection with Noh performers, explaining the ‘colour system’ illusion this creates. Dr Atsushi Iriki will present research into Zeami’s notion of riken-no-ken (the performers’ ability to separate themselves from their performance and evaluate their techniques).
Dr Iriki is also writing a Noh piece to premiere at the festival.
Of the other performers, Clod Ensemble will work on a new piece for the festival after a research trip to Japan in February 2018. Leon Michener, meanwhile, will explore the concept of ‘Ma’ (the space between two places or times) by performing on the piano without physically touching it. In addition, students on the MA Arts and Science course at Central Saint Martins will create pieces inspired by Noh.
Further details and booking information can be found on the King’s Place Website: