MOMOTARO: In Search of A Hero

Conceived, co-written and directed by Sonoko Kawahara
Co-written by: Leah Nanako Winkler

Theater presentation is partially inspired by Momotaro, written by Tadashi Matsui, illustrated by Suekichi Akaba, published by Fukuinkan Shoten Publishers, Inc., 1965.

2024年公演オーディションのお知らせ・Audition Notice for 2024 performance

Japan Society’s Lila Acheson Wallace Theater

Oni, you are different from us and we are different from you, but we can both exist in this world.

A cross-cultural gender-bending heroic tale with live music and dance, and employs the Japanese theatrical technique “Tayu”

New York City-based theater company Crossing Jamaica Avenue (CJA), known for its seamless blending of Eastern and Western theatrical elements, presents Momotaro: In Search of a Hero, a unique interpretation of Japan’s famed tale by the same name. In CJA’s innovative production, a three women cast – featuring a taiko/piano player, narrator, and singer/dancer – retell the adventures of “peach boy” Momotaro in a gender-bending production.

Momotaro bravely travels to an island filled with ogres to save his town. This highly interactive production that tells the story through live music, song, and dance, all cleverly narrated through the Japanese theater technique known as “TAYU” where one performer narrates while the other performs. The production aims to bridge together one of Japan’s most popular traditional hero quest stories with issues in contemporary American society in order to highlight lessons of cultural diversity, empowerment, and inclusion.


Photography by Mariaa Baranova

Production Credits

Conceived, co-written and directed by Sonoko Kawahara
Co-written by: Leah Nanako Winkler
Original Song “Small Boy” by Jason Young and Yui Kitamura
Performed by
Asuka Morinaga (Storyteller)
Tomoko Tokugaki (Dance & Song)
Fumi Tanakadate (Music)
Takemi Kitamura (Special appearance as Hime)
Dance choreographed by Tomoko Tokugaki
Soward play choreographed by Takemi Kitamura
Lighting by Takaaki Ando

May 5, 2019, 3 performances

MOMOTARO: In Search of a Hero is made possible in part with public funds from Creative Engagement, supported by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and administered by LMCC and Mental Insight Foundation.