The following statements are an attempt to summarize the Yokohama Theatre Ensemble philosophy, and to provide you some insight into how we approach Theatre. Nothing we write here is considered to be in stone, and it is likely our views will change as we continue to work together.
Theatre is a live communication of a story between the actors and the audience.
That communication requires that the performance is accessible to the audience on some level: intellectual or emotional. It requires that form is always secondary to function. It requires that form be justified by function. That justification can be intellectual or emotional.
If form becomes primary, then what you are seeing is dance.
A Story is not necessarily a linear narrative. It is the communication of an idea that has a life outside of the form of the project.
While Yokohama Theatre remains committed to creating the live Theatre version of a story, we acknowledge that sometimes a story is more than just the live Theatre component, and that the entire project may involve using other forms of art in addition to live performance.
Acting is doing something to someone for a reason or a reaction. That someone can be the audience. Live acting is the primary element of any Theatre performance; it’s what separates Theatre from the other arts.
If an actor does something that is not part of the reason/reaction chain, his or her action is not honest and will fail to communicate anything to the audience.
PERSPECTIVE ON TECHNOLOGY
Many Theatre groups proudly reject technology and new methods of communication and working in art. Our position is that technology which helps us towards our goal of making Theatre must be embraced in our work, both on stage and off. Rejecting technology for the sake of philosophy is counter-productive.
Science and Reason are paramount to the maintenance and advancement of human civilization and must be championed against superstition and irrationality. This doesn’t mean that we can’t use non-scientific elements in our projects, but they must only be used as metaphor and analogy in aid of the story being told. Fiction can be used to tell truth, but we must never confuse truth with fact.
For instance, A Midsummer Night’s Dream contains supernatural elements (fairies), which we understand are not factual, but we do understand that the play holds truth, which is why it survives to this day.