TSURU Soars in Houston
HOUSTON, June 29, 2015—Packed houses visited Asia Society to celebrate the inaugural world premiere production, Tsuru. Music and movement wove the Japanese folktale The Crane Wife for over 500 rapt audience members. The performances were the culmination of a near two-year plan, brought to Asia Society by Houston Ballet soloist Nao Kusuzaki. The folktale tells of a crane-turned-woman who marries a man and earns them money by weaving textiles. She leaves him forever upon his discovery of her true identity.
An international team of creatives worked with Kusuzaki to bring the project to life. Houston Ballet’s Charles-Louis Yoshiyama, Shahar Dori, and Zecheng Liang joined her on stage to round out the dance corps. Tokyo- and The Hague-based choreographer Kenta Kojori co-created the movement, joined by artistic director Matthew Ozawa who collaborated with scenic and lighting designers Ryan McGettigan and Renee Brode, respectively. Koto musician Yumi Kurosawa performed and composed music, accompanied by Texas-based cellist Lachezar Kostov.
Dedicated support for Tsuru was graciously provided by Akemi and Yasuhiko Saitoh, Nancy C. Allen, Ginni and Richard Mithoff, Mitsubishi Corporation (Americas), and the Texas Commission on the Arts. Asia Society is grateful for Bank of America’s series support of Asia Society’s performing arts initiatives. Asia Society was thrilled to name Houston Ballet as its principal collaborator, with additional community support from Japan America Society of Houston.