Settai Komura and Kenichi Shigeoka
Kenichi Shigeoka Top page > Stage Setting Design Work > Settai Komura and Kenichi Shigeoka
On 11 September 2006, “Nihonbashi Himonocho” by Settai Komura was published from the Heibonsha Library. In the chapter titled ‘Sophisticated trees in Kanazawa’, it touched on Kenichi Shigeoka’s stage setting for ‘Taki-no-Shiraito (White threads of waterfalls)’. The book also included, as an appendix, a memorial address for Settai Komura titled ‘Reminiscence’ contributed ‘by Kenichi Shigeoka to a periodical ‘Taishubungei’.
It has been nearly a month since Mr Komura passed away. Mr Komura’s death has somehow left me in particularly deep grief.
Mr Komura’s stage settings make me swoon
and feel as if I am transcended to a dreamy world. He was unsurpassable with the use of pleasant chromatic gradation, the
beauty of lines created by the three-dimensional structures made of surfaces
and sober, yet luminous colour tones that stands out in his stage design for
Japanese dance in particular. I was most
impressed with the fact that the stage setting, together with the costumes,
created a synergistic effect. And
furthermore, all these factors set off the actors on the stage to best
advantage without fail.
designers often fall into a trap of focusing too much on the technical effects
a stage setting creates and end up creating the stage set that is interfering for
actors. However, Mr Komuro was the
opposite. He designed colours and shapes
his stage sets rarely interfered with the actors, but rather enhanced their
performance. At the same time, stage
sets themselves fulfilled all the requirements.
I learned a lot from Mr Komura, in this respect.
Mr Komura really loved theatrical shows. Every time I saw him, he casually mentioned his annoyance with complicated negotiations about the stage sets, but then moved onto his wishes and hopes. His soft and gentle speech style was completely in tune with the feelings his stage design created. However, although his manners were soft, he had a distinctive sense of ‘self’ which was never marred by anything.
It is a huge loss not only for the scenographer’s circle, but also for the theatrical circles. I have heard about a plan for the posthumous exhibition of his work to honour his life. This would be just the farewell gift for his soul.
Written in an evening in late autumn
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Okura Museum of Art
Sketching tour for the ‘Fifty-three Stages of Tokaido’ Mural for the Imperial Hotel
Hotel Okura Niigata
Tokyo School of Fine Arts (Tokyo University of Art)Photos