Principal research 1: The creative works of Shuji Terayama-the actual circumstances of his activities, as clarified by primary materials

    Principal Researcher: Fumi Tsukahara (Professor, Faculty of Law, Waseda University)
    Collaborative Researchers: Minako Okamuro (Professor, Faculty of Letters, Arts, and Sciences, Waseda University)
    Itsuki Umeyama (Assistant Professor, Waseda University Theatre Museum)

【Research objective】
  This research aims to detail the creative works of Shuji Terayama, using materials in the collection of the Theater Museum, as well as those provided by Michi Tanaka, who worked as Terayama’s secretary for many years.
The Theatre Museum mainly holds books, video materials, flyers, and pamphlets, together with a small number of scripts and manuscripts. These limited categories make it difficult to appreciate the full extent of Terayama’s creative activities, which were extremely diverse.
The materials belonging to Ms. Tanaka, now held in the Theatre Museum, include many memos, from which we can catch a glimpse of one part of his creative life, as well as reference materials used in his creative process. Moreover, within the collection are Terayama’s favorite books from his school days and the foreign language books he mentioned in his essay, “The Mysterious Library.” These materials are being studied as historical evidence by specialists in a number of fields, in order to clarify his ideological background and understand his relationships with friends and acquaintances, thought to be the inspiration for Terayama’s creative works.
The aim is to use these materials to investigate Terayama’s cultural experiences and the authors and works that influenced him, in order to understand how he developed the elements that characterized his work.

【Summary of the research findings】
① Digital photos of the materials
・Photo albums
  Digital photographs were taken of printed photos that had been collected into 18 photo albums. The albums had been compiled by Ms. Tanaka, who had entitled them, “Around 1968,” “La Mama, New York, 1970,” “Horse-racing related,” and “Play related.” While they had been arranged by time period and field of work, their content had never been investigated in detail. There were approximately 50 photographs per album; in future, these image files will be shared with the research team, research meetings will be regularly held, and the work of historical investigation will progress. Ms. Tanaka’s cooperation has been requested for the task of identifying the subjects of the photographs.
  The scrapbooks included in the materials received from Ms. Tanaka were created by Terayama himself, together with people associated with the theatrical company. Together with the ones made by Ms. Tanaka, there were close to 100 scrapbooks in total. As the majority had already been sorted by Ms. Tanaka, it was possible to roughly identify the content, but it was not possible to understand every aspect of the article collections. The subjects of investigation in this research are the scrapbooks created by Terayama himself from the middle of the 1960s to the beginning of the 1970s. During this time, Terayama was not only a literary author, he also wrote for TV and radio. At the same time, it was during this period that he founded the experimental theater troupe Tenjo Sajiki, which generated much interest. The scrapbooks contain all of the magazine and newspaper reviews of his work, as well as the essays he wrote for magazines and interviews. Going forward, the plan is to use the image data to create a list of articles.

②Cataloguing of the library
  The cataloguing of the Terayama’s library of approximately 1,300 books is completed. The library consists of books Terayama supposedly enjoyed in his school days, foreign books, and rare books difficult to obtain. The library covers a variety of fields, indicating the breadth of Terayama’s interests. In the catalogue, the author name, book title, publisher name, and publication year are registered as bibliographical information.