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Rose Of Versailles Revival

posted on by Christopher Macdonald
TMS Re-Releasing Rose of Versailles TV series while Takarazuka Brings the Play Back to the Stage in Korea and Japan

The 250th anniversary of the birth of Marie-Antoinette (born in Vienna in 1755) is being used as a pretext by TMS Entertainment and the Takarazuka Revue Company to revive The Rose of Versailles.

Not only is TMS releasing the complete series on R2 DVDs (8 vols, BCBA-2321~28, 121 min. ea, ¥3800 ea.; Volumes 1-3 available since September 23; volumes 4-6 available since October 28 and volumes 7-8 available on November 25th), but Takarazuka will also restage their famous play for fans in Korea and Japan.

The famous all-girl stage troupe will perform for the first time in South Korea since the end of World War II. From November 11 to November 13 they will present The Rose of Versailles at the Kyung Hee University in South Korea. They will also present a “The Soul of Shiva” a play about Shiva, the God who invented dancing, reborn in New York City. The performances are in commemoration of the Korea-Japan Friendship Year.

In addition to the Korean performances, Takarazuka is also simultaneously performing two different versions of The Rose of Versailles in Japan.

Takarazuka Star Troupe toured Japan from September 24 to October 21 performing the "Fersen and Marie Antoinette version." From January to February they will perform at the Takarazuka Grand Theater, and then from February to April at the Toyko Takarazuka Theater.

Meanwhile, the Snow Troupe will be performing the "Oscar" version from February to March at the Takarazuka Grand Theater, and from April to May at the Tokyo Takarazuka Theater.”

The stage drama, first ran from 1974 to 1976, then again in 1988-89, drawing an audience of about 4 million. The play was responsible for an astounding reversal of fortunes at Takarazuka, the troupe had been in a state of decline for several years and may have been on the verge of shutting down when The Rose of Versailles premiered.

The Takarazuka Revue Company was formed in 1913 and has performed in over 120 cities in 18 countries. The company's 5 troupes stage over 900 performances a year around the world. Their first performance outside of Japan was in 1938 when a special troupe of 40 performers toured Europe and North America.

Before performing on stage as part of a troupe, girls must spend 2 years at the Takarazuka school where over 100 students apply every year but only 40 are accepted. At the school they are provided with theater training as well as regular high-school education. All the girls in the troupe are single and must leave the troupe when they get married (While in the school they are not permitted to have boyfriends).

Source: Takarazuka Website, The Korea Times, Clodjee's Safe-House.

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