Stomu Yamash'ta's THE RED BUDDHA THEATRE
The Man From The East Liner Notes
All text and cover art on this page used with permission from
Your JPOP Alternative by Bob Shumaker
Click Thumbnails to view larger images.
The Red Buddha Theatre was formed in Japan in 1971, after working there for some months they were brought to Europe for Summer '72 by Stomu Yamash'ta, the company's producer, director, composer; in July and August they were the sensation of the Avignon Festival. After a brief but successful visit to London's I.C.A. in August they returned to France to take up residency at the Carre Thorigny, a brand new theatre in Paris' oldest district, Marais. Their stay was eventually extended to January 1973 when the Company had to leave to commence a month at the Roundhouse in London. They play perpetually to packed houses and critical acclaim seems quite normal . . .
Stomu Yamash'ta is known to us as a virtuoso percussionist, a mime and musician in whose body music seems to flame, whose mind cries through the medium of his instruments: someone, as Henze put it, who makes visible the music of our time. Now he appears in a new role, as animator\author\composer directing the Red Buddha Theatre: 35 young Japanese actors, dancers and musicians, offering an uncommonly exhilarating, attractive, fascinating theatrepiece, "The Man from the East".
Though none of the performers can have been born on August 6, 1945, they are of the generation who still live in its shadow:rejecting the ethos of a society which madethat possible, but embracing things like love, and laughter, and the beauty of nature. Also the beauty of art. There is nothing sloppy about the show which is enacted by disciplined bodies, and played by musicians of fine tempered technique. Stomu draws freely from many sources: kabuki, traditional Japanese music, pop. The Edge, the Western group with whom he has often worked, also take part in this.
Though there is horror in the piece, there is and the gaiety of which marks the work of Bread and Puppets, but less despair easy vitality. They make one feel that there is hope for the world when young people can be so open; can shake off their fathers' guilt by having no part in their meaner ways of thinking; when they can so merrily and unbitterly mock the life of crowded subways, supermarkets, and offices where the telephone rings nonstop. Illusion perhaps, but a good, happy illusion a dream which more and more young people are endeavouring to live, and a good dream for the middleaged, caught in the horrid life, to enjoy whenever they can. A dream which Stomu and his accomplished ensemble communicate with elegant exhuberance.
Andrew Porter Financial Times 15 August 1972
Morris Pert, Alyn Ross, Peter Robinson, Maggie Newlands, Phil Plant
Hisako Yamash'ta, Shiro Murata, Yoshio Taeira, Robin Thomson, Hideo Funamato, Joji Hirota and Gary Boyle
My Little Friend 4.00
What a Way to Live in Modern Times 10.00
Mountain Pass 3.35
Memory of Hiroshima 8.40
ALL COMPOSITIONS BY STOMU YAMASH'TA
(P) 1973 ISLAND RECORDS LTD.
Tracks (iii) & (v) were recorded live at the Carre Thorigny Theatre Paris on 30th October 1972; the remainder were recorded at Advision Studios, London, in November 1972. Gary Martin engineered both sessions, his contributions were indispensable thanks Gary.
This is the first recording to be made by Morris Pert's new group, as yet unnamed, formed after the disintegration of Come To The Edge. It is a trio consisting of Morris on kit, Peter Robinson on Fender Piano and Alyn Ross on bass guitar; they played on the studio tracks. The complete list of musicians on tracks (i) (ii) (iv) (vi) is as follows:
Stomu Yamash'ta various percussion
Morris Pert drums and percussion
Peter Robinson electric piano
Alyn Ross bass guitar
Gary Boyle guitar (vi) only
Rohin Thompson soprano saxophone (iv) only
The musicians on tracks (iii) and (v) were as follows:
Stomu Yamash'ta marimba, shamisen, hand drum, fimpani and assorted percussion
Hisako Yamash'ta violin and shamisen
Joji Hirota claves and vocal
Hideo Funamoto triangle , cowbells and assorted percussion
Shiro Murata flute
Yoshio Taeira piano
Goro Kunii vocal
Mikako Takeshita laughter
Morris Pert drums and percussion
Maggie Newlands organ
Phil Plant bass guitar
A L**ner Enterprise Production