Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Les Voix Diphoniques

After listening to the remarkable voices from the Xhosa people on stage during Molora I went looking for knowledge. The site below calls it OVERTONE singing and cites singers like Michael Vetter, Christian Bollmann, Michael Reimann from Germany, Roberto Laneri from Italy, Rollin Rachele from the Netherlands, Josephine Truman from Australia, Les Voix Diphoniques , Thomas Clements, Iegor Reznikoff and Tamia from France. Overtone singing is also practised by a number of ethnic groups (Oirat, Khakass, Gorno-Altai, Bashkir, Tuvin, Kalmuk) of the republics of Russia bordering on Mongolia. In Rajasthan (India), in Taiwan among the Bunun ethnic group, in Tibet among the monks belonging to the Gyuto and Gyume monasteries. In South Africa among the Xhosa population, the practice of overtone singing style is known throughout recordings. NHK Educational channel will broadcast last night's performance of MOLORA on Sunday 12th March at 10 p.m.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Japanese research site

This is a good site for those who want to research Japanese theatre. It has an archive with back numbers. It has a wide spread of information. Every issue interviews a Japanese artist and international presenter. There is a Play of the Month. Recommended.

Thursday, February 02, 2006


Right. We are all off to the theatre on the 21st February at 7 p.m. Who is responsible? Still in her 30s, Jael Farber has produced a number of probing works that bring to life tragic events in her country’s recent history. Based on the ancient Greek tragedy of the Oresteia trilogy, Molora premiered in Germany in 2004. Acquaintances of Kanagawa Arts Foundation producer Midori Okuyama liked it so much that she was inspired to go see one of Farber’s productions in Australia last year. The result was an invitation to stage Molora in Japan as part of the Kanagawa Arts Foundation’s month-long Shukusai! Butai stage arts festival. And when the actors speak in Xhosa; it is subtitled in Japanese by Keiko Tsuneda. For more information on this play one need only google: Molora Kanagawa. Not connected to this directly but well worth a look for your research is : You will find a mass of articles about Japan and World Arts. The site is bilingual too. Believe me; it is worth a look.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Children of the Black Skirt

Watch out for a gothic fairytale with bite! Children of the Black Skirt by award winning Australian young author Angela Betzien is coming to YIS! The grade 11 IB class of Ben Irmov, Miyuki Watanabe and Sophia Yamaguchi will be joined by Emily Tamaru to present a spine tingling reflection on the forgotten children of past generations. Hear the stories of orphans from long ago, but be careful not to upset the cruel governess who walks the corridors of the orphanage wielding enormous scissors. It was orginally staged in Australia in 2003-4 and published by Currency Press in 2005. This haunting one act play will be performed on Friday 14th and Saturday 15th of April, 2006 in the Tanner Auditorium. There will be no ticket sales, as all donations will go to a local children’s charity. During the course of this term, the Grade 11 Theatre Arts Class has to take on a placement. A placement is where one becomes a trainee role within the company. They will choose and explore a placement from one of the areas below. In some cases, their placement will be an assistant to the key supervisor. Dramaturgy – researching, documenting the period (the historical and social environment) of the play as background for the director, actors and crew Directing – auditioning, planning production, conducting rehearsals and providing the artistic interpretation of the play Stage Management – assisting the director, overseeing all crews, and being responsible for the technical side of performance; coordinating and controlling the technical, dress and performances Choreography – interpreting the movement and dance sequences within the play and planning the dance styles Acting – interpreting the characters of the play both physically and emotionally; rehearsing and performing Lighting & Sound Design – designs colours and timings; prepares lighting plots, charts, cue sheets; hangs & focuses lights; operates lights during show; designs sound effects; creates sound cue sheets; makes SFX CDs; operates sound system Make-up & Costume Design - design make-up, costumes, accessories, hairstyles; make costumes; apply make-up and hairstyles; maintain make-up and costumes Set & Prop Design - design of set, riggings, colour schemes, arrangement of rostra; design, make, collect and manage properties used on stage for a place The performance of Children of the Black Skirt will be quite eclectic, even dare I say it abstract! We will endeavour to follow a mix of theatre such as: Epic Theatre ~ Brechtian Techniques (from Bertolt Brecht [1898-1956], Germany) Butoh ~ A form of theatrical dance & “avant garde performance art, that has its origins in Japan in the 1960's” Blue Man Group ~ A hybrid theatre group that combines “comedy, music and multi-media artistry to create a form of entertainment that is totally unique….developed in the late 80s with three long time friends Chris Wink, Phil Stanton and Matt Goldman” The Grade 11 class are lucky this year, as they are able to keep in contact with the author, Angela Betzien by email and this will help with the development of their portfolio work. More information on the one act play, the author, Angela Betzien and publisher Currency Press can be found at