Who are the Japanese entertainers you know?
Some Asian people may be able to answer immediately, while others may have no idea at all. There are many excellent entertainers in Japan, but only a few are active in the world.
One of them I would like to introduce to the world is Taichi Saotome.
His father was the head of an itinerant entertainer’s troupe that travelled all over Japan, and his mother was also a member of that troupe. He is now 31 years old, but his first stage appearance was at the age of only four. Since catching the eye of world-renowned film director and comedian Takeshi Kitano, he began to appear in Japanese films and on major stages, and is now not only the second leader of his troupe he inherited from his father, but also widely active in front of the public. He is particularly popular for the bewitching “Oyama” (male actor in female roles) he performs on stage.
The first time I saw him perform was on the stage of Hakuouki in 2010. I knew he existed long before I saw this play, but this was the first time I saw him perform live. He was only 19 years old at the time, but he was so majestic and his performance was so different from the other performers that I was instantly attracted to him. In particular, his sword fighting had a unique originality, speed and suppleness, a quality that all who saw it could not help but admire. Not only the traditional Japanese samurai drama, Taichi’s danceable and showy sword fighting is sure to win the hearts of Japanese and foreign audiences alike.
Black costume = Taichi
Red costume = Yuki (Taichi’s younger brother)
This is a slightly older video, but it is an essential performance ‘Kagee (shilhoette)’ when talking about Taichi Saotome.
Dragon and Peony
Taichi has a neutral look and body, but his presence on stage is overwhelming. In recent years, he has also appeared in a number of TV dramas, playing a wide variety of roles, from villain role to comic ones. This is precisely because of his experience in live performances, in which he has played everyone from children to the elderly. In particular, in the hit NHK drama “Come, Come Everybody” in 2021, he played the charismatic trumpeter from youth to adulthood, astonishing many viewers.
YouTube: SAOTOME TAICHI CHANNEL