Words by Tania Jezukaitis
This Japanese play written and directed by Toshiki Okada looks at the paternalistic way American baseball has weaved itself into both Japanese and Korean culture.
The minimalistic set design features a mini baseball field with a screen each for surtitles in Korean and Japanese. The smattering of English is mainly delivered by a patronising American male in voice overs to explain how baseball arrived to Japan and Korea. It begins with two young females with catcher mitts discussing their bewilderment of the game whilst a male actor with a baseball attempts to explain the rules which provides some comic interludes.
Toshiki Okada also incorporates choreography into the play with repetitive body movements and use of the mitts and bats as extensions of the actors bodies providing some visual intrigue.
Whilst interesting to learn of baseball’s origins and influence on their pop culture it was disjointed at times.
6.5 Overall Score