Theatrical modern play inspired by Queen’s A Night At The Opera to open in Japan

From the NME.

“The Age of the Samurai is about to begin…”

A modern theatre production inspired by the Queen album ‘A Night At The Opera’ will open in Japan next month with the band’s blessing.

Titled Q: A Night At The Kabuki, the show will feature all songs from the 1975 rock opus, and will be staged in Tokyo, Osaka and Kitakyushu.

The play is led by writer/director Hideki Noda of independent theatre company NODA•MAP. As Noda tells it, someone close to the band came to him with the idea to turn ‘A Night At The Opera’ into a play, two years before the success of the blockbuster Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody.

“Even though I was only half-convinced, I set about half-naked and sweating all over doing numerous workshops trying to put into words the inspiration I got from ‘A Night At The Opera’,” Noda said in a statement. “I then conveyed my ideas to that someone close to the band, and what do you know! I received a reply from Queen saying it was OK to go forward with the play.”

In a statement, Queen’s Brian May said he was “thrilled and honoured” to have his music soundtrack the production. “How wonderful to be a part of Japanese culture after all these years,” May said, “with what promises to be a new chapter in theatre history in this first year of the new Reiwa era.”

Set in medieval Japan, the show puts its own spin on Shakespeare’s Romeo And Juliet by re-imagining the tragedy’s ending: what would have happened if the star-crossed lovers had survived? Noda describes the play as “pretty unconventional in a weird kabuki way”.

Q: A Night At The Kabuki will premiere at the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre on October 8. It will also be staged at the Shin Kabuki-za Theater in Osaka and the Kitakyushu Performing Arts Center in Kitakyushu, from October 19 to 27 and October 31 to November 4 respectively.

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