Kurô Tanino The Dark Master


Two huis-clos, one in a thermal baths inn, the other in a restaurant. Two antiquated settings brought to life by a host of colourful characters. At first, Kurô Tanino’s staging takes us into familiar ground, that of an ultra-realist piece of theatre. However, we are soon taken by surprise. The different situations also take on a very different turn, leading us down paths which are both sensual and disturbing, burlesque and demonic.

Osaka. A hiker enters into an ordinary-looking local restaurant. The owner, as eccentric as he is associable, offers him his place as chef. The latter, handing him a cordless earphone, succeeds in convincing the young man. He explains to him that he can move in to the floor above and receive his culinary indications in complete discretion. From that moment on, he vanishes from sight. He sees everything, without being seen. The Dark Master, a talented chef, shares the secrets of his trade with his chosen one, and the highly unusual duo of the visible and the invisible brings the restaurant back to life. Onto the stage comes the owner’s preferred prostitute, or a Chinese client on the lookout for new businesses to buy up. These two key characters are the vehicles for digging into different strata: the dispossessing of Japanese heritage, and domination-based relationships in general. From amidst the heady odours, fire and obscurity, noise and silence, Tanino’s dazzling theatre reveals the paradoxes of our human condition.
Running time : 2h10
Performed in Japanese, with French subtitles