Nippon Bunraku – Experience Culture while Eating and Drinking

The full-sized Bunraku stage that was set up at Roppongi Hills in Tokyo

Taking a new look at Japanese culture

The Nippon Bunraku project aims to broaden the appeal of Bunraku puppet theater, a unique, traditional Japanese art, and to remind people of the value of Japanese culture. The project involves the construction of a full-sized Bunraku stage made of Japanese cypress, at a cost of roughly 100 million yen, which will be used to stage performances around Japan until the Olympic and Paralympic Games are held in Tokyo in 2020.

The stage, which can be knocked down and reassembled, is made of Japanese cypress from Yoshino, a region famous for this type of wood, and is approximately 19.7 meters wide and 6.7 meters tall, which is roughly the same as a standard-sized, permanent Bunraku stage. The audience section is surrounded by cotton curtains dyed using traditional techniques, giving audience members the feeling of being in another, artistic world.
The audience is encouraged to eat and drink during the performance, as well as before and during the intermissions. This gives the performances a special Nippon Bunraku atmosphere that is more relaxed than at traditional performances. We hope that people will enjoy these performances, which recreate one of the original forms of Japanese entertainment in an open, relaxed atmosphere.


Dates Venue Details
March 19-22, 2015 Roppongi Hills Arena, Tokyo Afternoon and evening performances (7 total, 1 cancelled because of rain)
October 17-20, 2015 Naniwa-no-Miya Park, Osaka Afternoon and evening performances (8 total)
October 15-18, 2016 Grounds of Sensoji Temple, Asakusa, Tokyo Afternoon and evening performances (8 total)
March 11-14, 2017 Ise Jingu, Mie Prefecture Afternoon and evening performances (7 total, 1 cancelled because of rain)