The co-production with Tokyo's Setagaya Public Theater debuted in Japan in May 2003, and received high marks from critics in a subsequent run in London. The Elephant Vanishes, a stage adaptation of three short stories by noted contemporary Japanese writer Haruki Murakami, plays a limited run to July 25 at the New York State Theatre at Lincoln Center.
The multimedia production interweaves stories of a housewife captivated by Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, a salesman obsessed by the disappearance of an elephant from the zoo, and a newly married couple who decide to rob a McDonald's. The highly visual show uses projections, monitors and other high tech wizardry to create a stream of surreal stage pictures. Such rich imagery is a hallmark of the London based company Complicte (formerly Theatre de Complicte) which had its New York debut in 1996 with The Three Lives of Lucie Cabrol at the first Lincoln Center Festival. Since then, Complicite has returned to New York with such acclaimed productions as The Street of Crocodiles, Mnemonic, and the Tony-nominated The Chairs.
Performed in Japanese with English supertitles, The Elephant Vanishes is directed, as are most Complicite shows, by artistic director Simon McBurney. Following its New York stand, the production will continue to London (Sept. 2-25), Paris (Oct. 1-9) and Michigan (Oct. 20-23.)
For tickets to the New York run of The Elephant Vanishes call 212-721-6500 or visit www.lincolncenter.org