(A Long Exhale)
Two colleagues are walking home from a drinking party after work, talking about nothing in particular. One of them mentions that he has recently been dumped by his girlfriend, and he turns to a fence on the side of the road and begins to pee. The pee begins dripping off the fence and onto the road (floor), but shows no signs of stopping. Passersby watch with curiosity—a grown man urinating in public, and the man himself becomes more and more uneasy when he can’t stop. Eventually his friend, who just happens to pass by and have brought a long a video camera, takes it out to record the event, when who should happen along but the peeing man’s ex….
Kyabetsu no tagui
(A Type of Cabbage)
A man’s memory has been taken out and transplanted into a cabbage. His wife has a worm in her head and is gradually losing her memory. A god wearing a short coat turns up. The man asks the god to get rid of the worm in his wife’s head, but the process goes disastrously wrong. The wife swells up to the size of the earth and can no longer be seen. The man now inside his wife hears her voice calling from outside. It is his memory taking in his wife’s memory, that is, the voice of the cabbageworm living inside the cabbage. Upon hearing his wife’s farewell, the weeping man begins peeling away the cabbage leaves.
Idainaru seikatsu no boken
(The Great Life Adventure)
Bedding is spread out in a room, and a man and a woman are sprawled out on top of it. The two are apparently ex-lovers, but the man is living with the woman, leading a life of seclusion. His only apparent goal is to win a videogame. Every once in a while, someone who appears to be a friend visits, and they have rambling conversations or play videogames. The man’s dead sister appears… perhaps he is having a dream. The woman he lives with orders him to leave. But the man doesn’t budge. In a way, it might even be considered positive…a “great life adventure, ” the way he continues to live his life doing absolutely nothing.
Idainaru seikatsu no boken ’s flyer (Maeda’s autograph)
“Series: Our Contemporary” Collaborations between Young Playwrights and Veteran Directors Vol. 2:
Dates: Jun. 27-Jul. 6, 2008
Venue: New National Theatre, The Pit Play by Shiro Maeda
Directed by Akira Shirai
Sayonara Boku no Chiisana Meisei
(Farewell, My Moment of Fame)
(Oct. 27 – Nov. 5, 2006 at Komaba Agora Theatre)
A playwright calling himself “I” ( boku ) decides to donate one of the Kishida Drama Awards presented to him by his girlfriend to a poor country. While he is away, a snake living in his room swells up as it tries to swallow the girlfriend, the entire world, and by extension the play itself. These two symbolic episodes gradually converge arbitrarily to create a dreamlike rambling story. The author’s own experience of having twice been nominated for but failing to win the Kishida Drama Award also becomes a motif.