The Lady Aoi

Playwright: Yukio Mishima

Direction: Fred Abrahamse

Set, Costume, Puppetry Design & Construction: Fred Abrahamse & Marcel Meyer

Soundscape: Charl-Johan Lingenfelder

Lighting Design 2021: Faheem Bardien

Photography: Fiona MacPherson, Ride Hamilton, Josh Andros

2014 Cast: Marcel Meyer & Nicholas Dallas

2019 Cast: Marcel Meyer & Justin Chevalier

2021 Cast: Marcel Meyer & Matthew Baldwin

Venues & Dates: The Art House, Provincetown [September 2014], The Provincetown Theatre [September 2019] Artscape Arena [17 November – 6 December 2021]

About: Presented as a dazzling fusion of visual and physical theatre, puppetry, mask work, original music and design, Yukio Mishima’s startling modern Noh play about unrequited love, obsession, passion, and possession tells how the living ghost of a mistress scorned, nightly torments the body of her lover’s new wife. THE LADY AOI was commissioned by the Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theatre Festival, USA as a flagship production for their 2014 Festival: Tennessee Williams and his Circle of Friends the production returned to Provincetown in 2019 for an extended season at the Provincetown Theatre and then played in rep with Tennessee Williams’ The Night of the Iguana as part of the 2019 Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theatre Festival curated around the theme Tennessee Williams & Yukio Mishima.

What the Press Said:

“Another extraordinary production from Abrahamse & Meyer Productions in South Africa. This elegiac, edgy modern Noh play with award-winning actors tells a tale of love and vengeance from beyond the grave.”   - THE PROVINCETOWN BANNER    

 

“Meyer and Chevalier are mesmerizing…under the lyrical direction of Fred Abrahamse. Without exception, Abrahamse & Meyer continually bring thoughtful, innovative and, and fresh productions to Provincetown and have become an important part of not only the festival, but of the theatrical legacy of the Cape tip…a rare theatrical event” PROVINCETOWN MAGAZINE

“One has come to expect near-perfection from Abrahamse-Meyer, and this play does not disappoint… brilliantly skilful… Performed with puppets, masks, and live actors, the play sizzles with sexual tension, dark energy, and hidden aggression. It’s breath-taking.” PTOWNIE MAGAZINE

 

“In this fresh staging of Yukio Mishima’s The Lady Aoi, what Freud defined as the repressed subconscious, and Japanese legend depicted as the world of vampiric ghosts, the Abrahamse Meyer Company unveils as rapacious and unceasing love. The confluence of many streams − the plot of an 11th century Japanese novel,  the classic 14th century adaptation into masked Japanese Noh drama, Yukio Mishima’s 20th century mask-less Noh play, the miracle of a lucid English translation, and the unique expertise of  Abrahamse Meyer melding West and East in the Japanese-inspired work of Tennessee Williams −  all swirl together powerfully, buoyed by Charl-Johan Lingenfelder music, a score as complex and compelling as the wonder-filled  production. Unforgettable: the staring eyes of the puppet heads.” – David Kaplan, Curator of the Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theatre Festival

“The production was flawless in capturing the essential beauty and grace of the horrific story as well as the acute delicacy of the Japanese Noh style. The creative scope, artistic depth, and exquisite skill, this independent classical theatre company demonstrates are a rarity in our profession today. I believe this company’s body of work needs/must be kept alive, supported, and experienced by audiences worldwide.  Their mission to create fearless art inspires and invites opportunities for theatregoers to meet themselves and the human condition, receiving a cathartic creative vision and its invaluableness for society.”  – Denise Gabriel, Resident Movement Director at Triad Stage & Artist Associate with Living Picture UK

“A timeless tale of love, loss, and the intense powers of passion and jealousy are beautifully realized in Abrahamse-Meyer’s production of Yukio Mishima’s The Lady Aoi , a modern adaptation of a classic Noh tale. Ghostly and delicate, this poetic production brilliantly uses the magic of the theatre to create a shadowed and complex world through puppets, creative costuming, and thrilling effects.  Marcel Meyer’s embodiment of Mrs. Rokoju’s desperate and dark desire ignites a dance of love and pain that is ultimately both chilling and tender.”     – Annette Saddik Professor Saddik is a leading Tennessee Williams and 20 th Century Theatre Scholar. She is also the author of several books including her most recent book “Tennessee Williams and the Theatre of Excess: The Strange, The Crazed, The Queer”, published by Cambridge University Press in 2015.

FLEUR DU CAP THEATRE AWARDS 2022:

Best Production [nomination]

Best Actor - Marcel Meyer as Nurse/Mrs. Rakujo [nomination]

Best Director - Fred Abrahamse [nomination]

Best Set Design - Fred Abrhamase & Marcel Meyer [win]

Best Costume Design -  Fred Abrahamse & Marcel Meyer [win]

Best Lighting Desing - Faheem Bardien [nomination]

Best Orginal Score/Soundscape - Charl-Johan Lingenfelder [nomination]

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