New Off-Broadway Project
SAMURAI OF BLUE EYES
-Creating a Stage for Japanese Actors to Shine in Off-Broadway-
Produced by The Japanese artist project
This Donation will be donated to Japanese artist for their operating found.
The Japanese Artists Project is going to support for Japanese Artists in NY.
Thank you for your continuous support.
Summary and Theme
"SAMURAI OF BLUE EYES" is an original work inspired by the book "A Ship Without a Anchor," which was published in Japan in 1982.I became interested in the fact that there was a Japanese-American soldier who served in the Japanese army during World War II after reading this book and learning about his existence.
Inspired by this book
I wondered about the conflict he must have felt and the emotions he must have experienced as he attacked his other motherland, the United States.
As I am half-Japanese and half-Chinese, so I felt a deep connection to the conflict this character experienced, and I decided to write a story about a Tokkōtai. I had previously acted at the theater about kamikaze pilots in Japan, and it had a profound impact on me. Like the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, I felt that the Tokkōtai' story was a part of Japan's history that must be told so that we never go to war again.
I had always wanted to write a play about Tokkōtai, and when I learned about the Japanese-American soldier, I thought that combining these two stories could make a compelling narrative that would resonate with American audiences. So, seven years ago, I began writing "SAMURAI OF BLUE EYES."
The theme is the significance of nationality and identity.
The protagonist, a Japanese Army soldier with a Japanese father and an American mother, and his comrades, struggle with the Special Attack mission, which was considered a last resort in the final stages of the Pacific War. The story depicts their struggle as they try to live with strength and courage despite being torn between two nations.
Newspaper materials etc
During the Pacific War, Japan's Tokkōtai operations resulted in approximately 3,948 young people under the age of 20 being ordered to sacrifice their lives. Japan and several other countries later established constitutions renouncing war, but many countries still do not stop waging war.
One of the reasons for this is nationalism, which is defined in the dictionary as "a philosophy or movement that emphasizes the unity, independence, and development of a nation-state." Nationalism itself is not necessarily a cause of conflict, but distinctions based on factors such as country and race have been used for attacking and discriminating against others for centuries. And between those distinctions is the individual's identity.
The work "SAMURAI OF BLUE EYES" aims to encourage discussion and reconsideration of what people with different nationalities and identities should think and do in contemporary society. It is hoped that this discussion will lead us, who are not politicians, to have the power to loudly say "NO" to war.
During World War II, the army called it the "Special Attack Unit," and the navy called it the "Shinpū (kamikaze) Special Attack Unit," officially known as the Tokkōtai. It was established by Japan in October 1944 as part of their desperate defense strategy against the advancing Allied forces in the Pacific theater. The primary purpose of the Tokkōtai unit was to cause maximum damage to enemy ships by crashing piloted aircraft into them, sacrificing the lives of the pilots. The unit consisted of young men, often in their late teens or early twenties, many of whom were university students or graduates who had been conscripted or volunteered for the unit. The suicide attacks specifically targeted Allied warships, including aircraft carriers, battleships, cruisers, and destroyers, aiming to disable or sink these vessels and disrupt the enemy's naval operations. The suicide attacks resulted in significant losses for Japan, with an estimated 3,948 Tokkōtai pilots killed in action during the war. While the suicide attacks inflicted damage on Allied ships, causing casualties and damage to naval vessels, strategically they did not alter the course of the war or change the outcome in Japan's favor.