“God Bless Baseball”

Text, Direction: Toshiki Okada
November 19th – November 29th
Venue Owlspot Theater
Dates 11/19 (Thu) 19:30
11/20 (Fri) 19:30
11/21 (Sat) 17:00*
11/22 (Sun) 14:00
11/23 (Mon) 19:30
11/24 (Tue) 19:30
11/25 (Wed) 19:30
11/26 (Thu) 15:00*
11/27 (Fri) 19:30
11/28 (Sat) 14:00
11/29 (Sun) 14:00
*Post-performance talk
Box office opens 1 hour before.
Doors open 30 minutes before.
Duration 90 min. (no interval, TBC)
Language Japanese, Korean, and English (with Japanese, Korean, and English surtitles)
Ticket Advance: ¥4,500 / Day: ¥5,000
Reserved seating
Tickets on general sale from September 27th, 10:00
Early Bird Discounts
Limited numbers of tickets will be sold at a special discount of around 30% on the following four days:
September 23rd to September 26th
God Bless Baseball

Japan, Korea, and America: Three nations’ past, present, and future, as seen through baseball

Japanese playwright and director Toshiki Okada is renowned for his radical use of language and physicality, such as in the Fukushima-inspired science fiction fable “Current Location” or “Super Premium Soft Double Vanilla Rich”, which peeped into labor conditions in Japan through the context of a convenience store. His work has been acclaimed not only at home in Japan but also overseas in Europe. Now he makes his first co-production with Korean partners. His approach is a novel one: re-examining the history of Japan and Korea from the perspective of baseball, the American sport that has been successful imported into both nations. The result is a sweeping exploration of the influence of America on modern Asian history, taking in both personal experiences of baseball and the stories of major league players in Japan and Korea.
Precog website


F/T15 performances
Photos: (c) Kikuko Usuyama

Premiere at Asian Arts Theatre (Gwangju, Korea) in September 2015
(c) Asian Arts Theatre (Moon So Young)


Artist Profile

Toshiki Okada

Toshiki Okada

Playwright, novelist, head of chelfitsch

Born in Yokohama in 1973. He formed chelfitsch in 1997. “Five Days in March” won the 49th Kishida Kunio Drama Award in 2005, while “Air-Conditioner” was a finalist for the Toyota Choreography Award 2005. His debut novel, “The End of the Special Time We Were Allowed” (2007), won the 2nd Oe Kenzaburo Award. Since 2012 he has served on the jury for the Kishida Kunio Drama Award. He published his first collection of theatre theory in 2013. “Five Days in March” has been performed in 70 cities around the world.
chelfitsch website

Artist Statement

Baseball came to Japan in 1873 and to the Korean peninsula in 1904. Since then, over a century has passed and the sport has become completely integrated into the culture and society of these two nations, as well as the lives of the people who live in them. This play moves forward by building up various scenes related to baseball. There are girls who don’t really know the rules of baseball. Then there’s a man who has come to hate the sport due to some trauma he experienced during his adolescence. For some reason or other, he’s married to a girl who loves baseball. The baseball player Ichiro (or a fake Ichiro) also makes an appearance. These are memories, personal or national, of baseball. There are portrayals of anecdotes involving major league Korean and Japanese players.

Ultimately, this story will be forced to deal directly with the great presence that is America. This is a country that has had a massive influence on both Japan and South Korea. America continues to make use of that influence over us today. America exists above us, behind us, within us, and alongside us. Is it possible to connect that strong influence with the present situation in a different way?

Cast & Creative Team

Text, Direction:Toshiki Okada
Translation, Interpretation:Hongyie Lee
Cast:Yoonjae Lee, Pijin Neji, Sunghee Wi, Aoi Nozu
Stage Design:Tadasu Takamine
Costumes:Kyoko Fujitani (FAIFAI)
Dramaturges:Sugatsu Kanayama (Tokatsu Sports), Hongyie Lee
Stage Managers:Koro Suzuki, Tsubasa Yamashita
Stage Assistant:Chikage Yuyama
Lighting:Ayumi Kito
Lighting Operator:Yukie Shibata
Sound:Yuji Tsutsumida (WHITELIGHT)
Sound Operator:Masahide Ando
Video Director:Takaki Sudo
English Translation:Aya Ogawa
Japanese Surtitles (from English):Kaku Nagashima
Voice:Jerome Young
Surtitles Operator:Tomoe Ohshima
Publicity Design:Ruka Noguchi
Photography: Kikuko Usuyama
Video Documentation Director: Takaki Sudo
Video Documentation:Masanobu Nishino, Mikihiro Endo, Ryo Mikami, Woomin Hyun
Production Co-ordination: Akane Nakamura, Tamiko Ouki, Nana Koetting, Mai Hyodo, Mihoka Kawamura (precog)
Interns:Shiori Kono (precog)
Miku Kukino, Ryo Sato, Risa Suzuki, Anju Tomaru, Akari Yoshida, Lin Chia Chi (Festival/Tokyo)
Front of House/Production Co-ordination Assistant:Shoko Abe
Backstage Assistants:Chihiro Kinoshita, Yuto Yanagi, Nichika Yagyu, Kaede Takemoto, Takaya Kobayashi
Costume Assistants:Fumiko Hideshima, Toyomi Kano
Produced byprecog, chelfitsch
Co-produced byAsia Culture Center – Asian Arts Theatre; Festival/Tokyo; Taipei Arts Festival
Additional commissioning support provided by FringeArts, Philadelphia; Japan Society, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago; The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland; Wexner Center for the Arts at The Ohio State University
Research and workshop supported byDoosan Art Center
In co-operation with Kinosaki International Arts Center, Steep Slope Studio, Sample
Commissioned by Asia Culture Center – Asian Arts Theatre

Tokyo Production
Production Co-ordination:Yumiko Okazaki, Akiko Juman (Festival/Tokyo)
Presented by Festival/Tokyo