Today I went to the Kanze Nogakudo to see the last Urata Teiki Noh. Today’s programme featured the rare Morihisa, and Hagoromo. There is a lot to say about the two performances I saw, but in this post I will talk about another aspect of today’s experience. Something that I am afraid contributed to an at least partially negative reception of the performance.
I’m not going to write an essay here, I will just copy here some thoughts that I jotted down during the play.
Today's average age of the audience: 70 years. There's all kinds of good reasons for this. Will write about them next time. Issues resulting from the increasing age of the Noh audience:
Bad smell in the theatre. Most of it comes from cheap/old fashioned hair spray.
Huge queue at the toilet during the break.
Amateurs who bring their utaibon and take the Nogakudo for a Noh sing-along karaoke kind of place.
Grannies sucking on candies, usually taking ages to unwrap them from a very noisy plastic wrapping.
Bad hearing makes people shout instead of whisper.
No wonder young people don't want to go to the Noh theatre. If I took a friend today I'm sure he/she would have never wanted to come back to what seems to be a retirement house... AGE IS AN ISSUE!
This post is ironic but the matter is serious. Will expand it in a more academic fashion some other time.