The Garden of Words Stage Production

Biography

Whole Hog Theatre specialises in creating Anglo-Japanese adaptations with emerging artists. Their work in the UK and Japan aims to challenge stereotypes, champion diversity and encourage new audiences to the theatre. Their first Anime theatre production was the world’s first theatrical staging of Hayao Miyazaki’s renowned animated film Princess Mononoke, produced with the kind permission of Studio Ghibli. Since 2015, they have had a base in Tokyo where they forge new collaborations and connect British and Japanese artists. 

“You’ve been living your whole life alone…”

Rainy season. Tokyo. Akizuki is skipping class; Yukino should be at work.

When a student and an older woman meet by chance whilst seeking solace in a Japanese garden, their mutual feelings of alienation draw them together. But a truth is about to be uncovered. The friendship that could save them might also ruin them…

Based on the stereotype-defying Anime by world-renowned director Makoto Shinkai (your name.), The Garden of Words is a modern Tokyo tale inspired by ancient Man’yōshū poetry. The subtle drama explores invisible disability, loss of human connection in a digital world, and the moral line between platonic and romantic longing.

In a unique Anglo-Japanese collaboration, this world theatrical premiere will be created and performed in London and Tokyo by the UK’s Whole Hog Theatre (Princess Mononoke stage adaptation), and Anime stage production specialists, Nelke Planning (Sailor Moon and Naruto stage productions). A female-led project, the work aims to bring together Japanese and British creatives, encourage diverse new audiences, and challenge stereotypes about Anime and Japan.

This interdisciplinary adaptation delves into Shinkai’s visually emotive story through puppetry, movement and projection art.