Tokyo Festival World Competition 2019

Artists of the rising generation gather from around the world!- To create a new "Scale" for measuring the value of performing arts.

It is often said, that it is impossible to decide upon the superiority between different works of performing arts. But it is also true that all artists constantly struggle to “better” their work. Undeniably, there is a form of competition on a global level.

If that is the case, what must we do in order to enrichen performing arts all over the world?

What is needed for Asian artists to thrive internationally?

What immediately comes to mind is to create a new “scale” to measure the quality of performing arts!

This has to be it. To think about what makes a “superior work of art”.

The “World Competition” is an opportunity for artists and audience to gather and consider this problem together.

Satoshi Miyagi, General Director of Tokyo Festival

Yoshiji Yokoyama, Director of Tokyo Festival World Competition


Dates : 29 Oct, Tue – 4 Nov, Mon

Venue : Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre
(Playhouse, Theatre East, Theatre West, and others)

★Recommenders’ Presentation
【Date】29 Oct, Tue 14:00-16:00
【Venue】Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre, Symphony Space

★Recommenders’ Talk
【Date】30 Oct, Wed 16:00/17:00 31 Oct, Thu 15:30/16:30/19:30
【Venue】Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre, Atelier West

★Artists’ Jury Meeting
【Date】4 Nov, Mon 10:00-15:00
【Venue】Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre, Theatre West

★Japanese-Speaking Critics’ Jury Meeting
【Date】4 Nov, Mon 10:00-15:00
【Venue】Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre, Atelier West

★Award Ceremony
【Date】4 Nov, Mon 17:30-18:30
【Venue】Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre, Playhouse

※Free of charge and reservations are not required (audience will enter in order of arrival)

Participating Works


Dai Chenlian (Beijing, China)

ⓒthe artist

“东来紫气满函关 (Big Nothing) ”

Ghost stories and childhood memories, a shadow-puppet theatre piece where dreams and reality intersect…
What lies beyond the humor, the madness, and the nonsense – ?

【Date】2 Nov, Sat 15:30/19:30

【Venue】Theatre East

For more information>


Sydney Chamber Opera (Sydney, Australia)

ⓒZan Wimberley

“The Howling Girls”

The unconcealed voices of traumatized girls echo in this non-verbal opera

【Date】31 Oct, Thu 14:00/18:00


For more information>


El Conde de Torrefiel (Barcelona, Spain)

ⓒClaudia Pajewski

“La posibilidad que desaparece frente al paisaje (Possibilities that disappear before a landscape)”

History, events, and life, flowing away behind
A “Daily life” and “Entertainment”

【Date】30 Oct, Wed 14:00/18:00

【Venue】Theatre East

For more information>


Charles Nomwendé Tiendrebéogo (Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso)

ⓒDennis Yulov

“Mea Culpa”

Ghosts willing to reverse their fate, brought back to life through “Masks”
A Physical Theatre piece that connects the roots of African culture with modern society

【Date】30 Oct, Wed 15:30/19:30

【Venue】Theatre West

For more information>


Bonobo (Santiago, Chile)

ⓒMarcuse Xaverius

“Tú Amarás (You Shall Love)”

Extraterrestrials have arrived… Doctors thinking about “discrimination” in a conversation full of black humor

【Date】2 Nov, Sat 14:00/18:00

【Venue】Theatre West

For more information>


dracom (Osaka, Japan)

ⓒTAKE nob


Humorous voices and hours of vague despair tumble and fall from the bottom of tragedy

【Date】2 Nov, Sat 19:30 / 3 Nov, Sun 13:00


For more information>



Chairperson of the Jury

©Angelo Cricch

Juliette Binoche

Actress (France)

Vice-Chairperson of the Jury


Mari Natsuki

Mari Natsuki Terroir (MNT) director

The Artists Jury

【Asia】Yang Jung-ung (Artistic Director, Yohangza Theatre Company|Seoul, South Korea)

【Oceania】Lemi Ponifasio (Theater Director / Choreographer / Stage Designer / Founder and director of MAU)|Auckland, New Zealand)

【Europe】Thomas Ostermeier (Theater Director / Schaubühne Berlin Artistic Director|Berlin, Germany)

【Africa】Brett Bailey (Playwright / Theatre Director / Stage Designer, Third World Bunfight|South Africa)

【Americas】Emily Johnson (Choreographer, Emily Johnson / Catalyst|Manhahtaan / Mannahatta (Manhattan, NYC), Lenapehoking (U.S.A))

The Japanese-Speaking Critics’ Jury

【Asia】Lee Chonghwa (Professor of Political Philosophy, Politics of Culture and Postcolonial Studies in the Department of Political Science, Faculty of Law, Seikei University|From Jeju Island, South Korea / Based in Tokyo, Japan)

【Oceania】Adam Broinowski (Director / Theatre make / Performer, Lecturer in the College of Asia and the Pacific at the Australian National University|From Adelaide, Australia / Based in Canberra, Australia)

【Europe】Tove Björk (Researcher of Kabuki, Associate Professor of Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Saitama University|From Pargas, Finland / Based in Tokyo)

【Africa】Samuel Nfor (Theatre practitioner, Adjunct lecturer in Rikkyo University|From Bamenda, Cameroon / Based in Tokyo, Japan)

【Americas】Cody Poulton (Researcher of Japanese theatre and literature, Professor of Pacific and Asian Studies, University of Victoria|From Toronto, Canada / Based in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada)

【Japan】Naoto Moriyama (Theatre Critic, Professor of Department of Performing Arts, Kyoto University of Art and Design|From Tokyo, Japan / Based in Kyoto, Japan)


Profile of Recommenders>

【Asia】Seonghee Kim (Independent Curator / Producer, former artistic director of Asian Arts Theatre|South Korea)

【Oceania】Stephen Armstrong (Creative Director of Asia TOPA, Melbourne|Australia)

【Europe】Agnès Troly (Program Director, Festival d’Avignon|France)

【Africa】Kira Claude Guingané (Administrative Director of Festival International de Théâtre et de Marionnettes de Ouagadougou|Burkina Faso)

【Americas】Carmen Romero Quero (Executive Director, Festival Internacional Santiago a Mil|Chile)

【Japan】Yoshiji Yokoyama (Programmer of Tokyo Festival)

Reasons for the award

The Tokyo Festival World Competition 2019 was held at the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre from Oct. 29 till Nov. 4 during the Tokyo Festival 2019, and the Award for Outstanding Show and other awards were given at the award ceremony on Nov. 4. 

Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike participated in the award ceremony and congratulated the award recipients.

The awards and the reasons for the awards are as follows:


*Reserved Seating Only (tax included in price)


★Single tickets
Advance ¥2,500 / Same Day ¥3,000
Disability discount ¥2,250 (For advance tickets only / Purchasable only through the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre box-office by telephone)
*On sale from 15 Sep, Sun 10:00


★Set tickets *End of sales
2-performances Set ¥4,000
6-performances Set ¥9,600
*Pre-release ony
*Pre-release : 1 Sep, Sun 10:00 to 14 Sep, Sat 23:59


*No student discounts
*Preschool children cannot attend the performances
*All programs other than the listed performances are free of charge, and reservations are not required (audience will enter in order of arrival)
*If you wish to attend a performance in a wheelchair, please contact the Tokyo Metropolitan Theater box-office.


Tokyo Festival Ticket Centre
*The links will lead you to the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre Box Office website.


Booking via phone or at the ticket counter
Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre Box Office
At the ticket counter: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. (Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre 1F/excluding days the theater is closed)
TEL: 0570-010-296 (navi dial) 10 a.m.-7 p.m. (excluding days the theater is closed)


Ticket Pia
0570-02-9999 (24hours・IVR)



Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre

1-8-1 Nishi-Ikebukuro, Toshima-ku, Tokyo 171-0021
Tel: 03-5391-2111

2-minute walk from West Exit of Ikebukuro Station on JR lines, Tokyo Metro lines, Tobu Tojo Line, and Seibu Ikebukuro Line
*Directly accessible from Exit 2b of Ikebukuro Station underground passage

For more information>


Tokyo Festival Executive Committee[Toshima City, Toshima Mirai Cultural Foundation, Festival/Tokyo Executive Committee, Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture(Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre & Arts Council Tokyo)]


    Tokyo Festival World Competition 2019 Director Yoshiyuki Yokoyama's blog