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Friday, June 2, 2006

'INTO THE WOODS'

Hit fairy tale musical returns


Voted Best Musical of 2004 by the vernacular magazine Musical, "Into the Woods" returns to the New National Theatre with even greater verve than before, boosted by an increased confidence and greater experience second time around.

News photo
Atsuko Takahata and Kazuki Kosakai and cast (below)
News photo

With music and lyrics by Tony Award and Pulitzer prizewinner Stephen Sondheim, one of the biggest players in musicals in the United States, this Japanese production is adapted and directed by Amon Miyamoto, who scooped the Yomiuri Award when the production played in Japan two years ago.

Incorporating elements of Brothers Grimm fairy tales such as as Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood and Jack and the Beanstalk, the story -- scripted by American James Lapine -- cleverly weaves together elements of fantasy and satire on the subject of human nature to create a work with genuine appeal to both children and adults. Allied to that, the challenging, memorable music, and set designs by Yoko Isonuma, are a fantasy unto themselves, so that once the curtain rises, audiences are instantly drawn into Sondheim's symbolic and ironic world.

"Into the Woods" runs June 2 (2 p.m.), 3 (1 p.m., 6 p.m.), 4 (1 p.m.), 5 (7 p.m.) and 6 (2 p.m.) at the New National Theatre, a 2-minute walk from Hatsudai Station on the Keio New line. Tickets for the July 1-2 at Hyogo Performing Arts Center have sold out. For more details, call the New National Theatre on (03) 5352-9999 or visit www.nntt.jac.go.jp



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