Nippon Connection is a Japanese film festival held each May for about a week with Mousonturm as the main venue and other venues around the city. It is the largest film festival in Europe that focuses solely on Japanese films, showing many different varieties of films. Each holding attracts a total audience of about 16,000, not only from Germany but other countries around Europe. One distinctive aspect of the festival is the fact that most of the staff involved are volunteers.
Frankfurt Book Fair is held each year in October at Messe Frankfurt as one of the world’s largest book fairs, attracting representative of the publishing industry and media from around the world.
*3 Frank Castorf
Born in East Berlin in 1951. He was active in the West from before the fall of the Berlin Wall, and in 1992 he was appointed as artistic director of the Volksbuehne Berlin. Today, he is known as one of Germany’s leading directors. He is known for his radical directing based on drastic re-writings of texts of classic plays and adaptations of novels, and he is acclaimed for his numerous works presenting scathing criticism of Western capitalism and contemporary society. In 2005, he came to Japan to present a production of Endstation Amerika. In 2017 he will retire from his position as artistic director of Volksbuehne Berlin.
*4 Nicolas Stemann
Born in Hamburg in 1968. He is known and praised for his post-drama style productions of classic plays and plays of writers like Elfriede Jelinek in productions performed at theaters such as Staatsoper Hannover, Thalia Theater Hamburg, Deutsche Theater Berlin, etc. He won the 3sat Prize in 2012 for his production of Faust I+II (Thalia Theater) in the Theatertreffen (Berlin Theater Festival) that presents ten noted works premiered in the German-speaking world. The same year, he received the “Outstanding Director of the Year Award” (Theater Heute magazine). He served s resident director of the Burgtheater Vienna from 2004 to 2007 and from 2015 at Münchner Kammerspielen. In 2014, he presented a production of Faust Part I at the Shizuoka Performing Arts Centre (SPAC) in Shizuoka, Japan.
*5 Christoph Schlingensief
Born in Oberhausen in 1960. In 1984 he debuted as a full-length film scriptwriter. From 1989 to 1992, he won acclaim for his German trilogy (100 Jahre Adolf Hitler – Die letzte Stunde im Führerbunker, Das deutsche Kettensägenmassaker and Terror 2000 – Intensivstation Deutschland). In 1993, he began activities as a stage director at Volksbuehne, and has since directed many plays at theaters in the German-speaking realm. In addition to staging plays often making use of people with disabilities an people from the general public and making abundant use of video art, he conducts socially provocative projects as an arts activist that always provoke media attention. In 2010, he passed away at the age 49. In 2011, the German Pavilion with its displays of his works won the Leone d’Oro award of the Venice Biennale. In 2014, a feature presentation of his works was shown at Festival / Tokyo. Representative works include Ausländer raus! (2000 / Vienna Festival) among others.
*6 Theater am Turm (TAT)
Founded in Frankfurt in 1953. In the 1970s, there was a period when Rainer Werner Fassbinder served as artistic director. In 1980, it reopened under a new concept of a theater without a resident theater company, and until 1986 it presented experimental works by free scene artists and foreign artists. It closed permanently in 2004.
Rhizome is a metaphorical term and philosophical term for a concept put forward by Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari in their book A Thousand Plateaus. In opposition to the model of tree-like outgrowth of branches as the prime depiction of development of varieties in traditional Western metaphysics, the rhizome model allows for ceaselessly established multi-directional connections that have no center and no ends like a botanical rhizome or rhizome-like growth.
*9 Complete Shelter Manual, Frankfurt Edition “EVAKUIEREN”
A project created by Akira Takayama (Port B) in collaboration with Mousonturm that ran for a about a month in September 2014. With the cooperation of other artists from 15 artist groups, 40 “Shelters” were created around Frankfurt and neighboring areas for audience to download maps of from the project’s website and then visit using public transportation, etc. The critic site Nachtkritik nominated the project as a “Most Important German-language Work in 2014” and the ensuing open voting selected it as 8th most important.
A platform for progressive artists working crossover creation that transcends the boundaries of theater, performance, live art, contemporary art, music, film and media art, etc. Works selected from open applications are then produced at one of the participating theaters including Sophiensæle (Berlin), FFT Dusseldorf, Mousonturm, brut (Vienna) and Gessnerallee (Zurich) and then performed at all the theaters as part of the FREISCHWIMMER Festival. The meaning of FREISCHWIMMER is one who swims.
*11 Paula Rosolen
Born 1983. Frankfurt-based choreographer and dancer. The work referred to here is her new work Puppets s (premiered Mousonturm July 2016) based on research on Bunraku and Shishimai during a residency at Goethe Institute Kyoto’s Villa Kamogawa, and research on Malaysian puppet theater.
Words of Lithuanian anarchist, Emma Goldman who was known for her political activism in the US.