Normally, theatre audiences only see a finished work on-stage. But on Saturday (September 23), drama lovers can go behind the scenes at Pacific Theatre (1440 West 12th Avenue) and see how its latest show, Empire of the Son, is being created. The free event runs from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. as part of BC Culture Days.
Theatre artist Tetsuro Shigematsu wrote and performs the solo show. Pacific Theatre says that it’s being re-imagined to launch the Vancouver company’s 40th-anniversary season.
Meanwhile at the open rehearsal, Shigematsu will work with the director, Kaitlin Williams. Audience members can enter through the stage door and come and leave as they like. Furthermore, they can ask questions of the performer and the director.
Pacific Theatre has asked the public to confirm attendance by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shigematsu wrote PhD. thesis about Empire
In 2015, Shigematsu received rave reviews in when he unveiled this multimedia show about his relationship with his ailing father, Akira. Shigematsu and his father both worked as radio broadcasters.
Since its world premiere, Empire of the Son has toured internationally in several countries. In 2018, Shigematsu wrote about his play in a PhD. dissertation.
“My father died on September 18, 2015,” Shigematsu revealed. “Less than three weeks later, I stood onstage at The Cultch’s Culture Lab in East Vancouver and shared with an audience of theatregoers the story of his death and his life.”
His thesis addressed focused on exploring family relationships through research-based theatre.
“At the centre of this dissertation is Empire of the Son, a theatrical script that explores my contentious relationship with my Japanese father,” Shigematsu noted. “This exploration is based on memories, interviews, and artifacts such as photographs, documents, and letters.”
The re-imagined Empire of the Son runs at Pacific Theatre from September 28 to October 21. For tickets, visit the Pacific Theatre website. Follow Pancouver on Twitter @PancouverMedia and on Instagram @PancouverMedia.