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Research Project to be undertaken by Showa University of Music,
Opera Research Center


I.Under the Open Research Center Project, a special program subsidized by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology

II.Objectives of the Research Project:
This research aims to seek and propose practical and specific measures for enhancing culture and arts centered around opera in Japan, through effectively and reasonably utilizing the cultural resources mainly of opera theaters. In recent years, the number of opera theaters and theaters where opera performances can be held has grown considerably, and opera performances take place much more frequently. This has led to an increase of issues related to decisions on actual performances, programs to performed, casts, etc., as well as the process of deciding budget shares and job descriptions. These issues have become more significant and serious in comparison with major foreign opera theaters. Opera is the most expensive musical art to produce, considering the necessary human and monetary resources, as well as the time required for preparations. Therefore, another important issue is that the capital, which is taken from public funds, must be utilized effectively. Based on these factors, we will research and propose proper measures for promoting the culture and arts in Japan, through a survey and comparison of major foreign opera houses, with focus on their personnel administration system, important positions, distribution of budget, decisions on programs and casts, and all the important factors of managing the theaters. Furthermore, our survey and comparison will be extended to discover how these theaters obtain funds, and whether and how they achieve recognition and support from the public.

III. Research Content (Extract)
1. Overseas Research
1-1. Collection of basic data for leading overseas opera theaters and groups:
Basic data collected to be separated into five regions.
1) Italy, France, Belgium, Holland, Spain, Argentina
2) Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary
3) United Kingdom, USA, Australia, Canada
4)Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Denmark, Holland, Finland, Norway
5)Japan, South Korea

1-2. Overseas Research Theme Titles
1)Current situation and future issues of opera management in each country
2)Restrictions and strategies used within opera planning and production
3) Research about opera management (creation of business models)
4) The reality of “stage direction” of current opera performances
5) Current situation of stage management in overseas opera houses
6) Comparative research on the fundamentals of launching opera performances in Asia
7) Opera networks, etc.

2. Domestic Research
2-1. Organization of basic data about domestic opera groups and theaters
2-2. Overseas Research Theme Titles
1) Reading basic data
2) The position of opera production within the Japanese cultural agenda
3) Relationships between theaters and groups
4) Invitational overseas operas
5) Management of Japanese opera works
6) Research dealing specifically with theaters' stage facilities, etc.

IV. Manners for disclosing academic materials and research results
1)To maintain securely the results of this research, as well as all materials collected.
2)To invite to Japan persons who are responsible for the management of major foreign theaters and producing organizations, and to hold open seminars and symposiums together with Japanese persons in similar positions, government personnel, art management researchers, and members of the general public, in order to share understanding of the significance of this research and of present problems.
3)To publicize the collected materials and results in the form of books and on the internet as common social property.

V. List of Members to be involved in the Research Project (Alphabetical)
 Igarashi, Kiyoshi President of Showa University of Music, and Principal of Showa University of Music, Opera Research Center
 Furuhashi, Yu Associate Professor of Showa University of Music
 Hirowatari, Isao Professor of Showa University of Music
 Horiuchi, Osamu Music Critic
 Ishida, Asako Associate Professor of Showa University of Music
 Kuroda, Kyoichi Producer of the Orchard Hall, Music Critic
 Miyama, Yoshio Professor of Keio University
 Nagatake, Yoshiyuki A Former Professor of Showa University of Music
 Nakayama, Kingo Managing Director,Tokyo Nikikai Opera Foundation
 Nomura, Saburo Lecturer of Waseda University, Music Critic
 Ohga, Hiroshi Professor Emeritus Showa University of Music, General Director of Japan Opera Foundation
 Obata, Tsuneo Professor of Showa University of Music
 Sakai, Kentaro Assistant Professor of Showa University of Music
 Sekine, Reiko Music Critic, Assistant Researcher of Showa University of Music Opera Research Center
 Shindo, Hironobu Assistant Professor of Showa University of Music
 Takenami, Kyoko Associate Professor of Showa University of Music
 Terakura, Shotaro Music Critic
 Uehara, Emi Professor of Kyoto Tachibana University, Director of the Biwako Hall
 Yamazaki, Hiroshi Lecturer of Showa University of Music
 Watanabe, Michihiro Professor Emeritus Showa University of Music
 Watanabe, Hiroshi Professor of the University of Tokyo

VI. Contact

Showa University of Music, Opera Research Center
1-16-6, Manpukuji, Asao-ku, Kawasaki City, Kanagawa, 215-0004 Japan
Tel: 044-953-1230 Fax: 044-953-6580
e-mail: opera@tosei-showa-music.ac.jp
Website: http://www.tosei-showa-music.ac.jp