Biography

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Shūji Terayama (December 10, 1935 – May 4, 1983) was an avant-garde Japanese poet, dramatist, writer, film director, and photographer. According to many critics and supporters, he was one of the most productive and provocative creative artists to come out of Japan. He was born December 10, 1935, the only son of Hachiro and Hatsu Terayama in Hirosaki city in the northern Japanese prefecture of Aomori. His father died at the end of Pacific War in Indonesia in September 1945. At the age of nine, his mother moved to Kyūshū to work at an American military base while he himself went to live with relatives in the city of Misawa, also in Aomori. At this same time, Terayama lived through the Aomori air raids that killed more than 30,000 people.

Terayama entered Aomori Prefectural Aomori High School in 1951, and in 1954 went to prestigious Waseda University's Faculty of Education to study Japanese language and literature. However, he soon dropped out because he fell ill with nephrotic syndrome. He received his education through working in bars in Shinjuku. His oeuvre includes a number of essays claiming that more can be learned about life through boxing and horse racing than by attending school and studying hard. Accordingly, he was one of the central figures of the "runaway" movement in Japan in the late 1960s, as depicted in his book, play, and film "Throw Away Your Books, Run into the Streets!

In 1967, Terayama formed the Tenjō Sajiki theater troupe, whose name comes from the Japanese translation of the 1945 Marcel Carné film "Les Enfants du Paradis", so can be translated as "children of heaven", however its correct translation is "Ceiling Gallery" and has a meaning similar to the English expression "Peanut Gallery". The troupe was dedicated to the avant-garde and staged a number of controversial plays tackling social issues from an iconoclastic perspective. Some major plays include "Bluebeard", "Yes", and "The Crime of Fatso Oyama", among others. Also involved with the theater were artists Aquirax Uno and Tadanori Yokoo, who designed many of the advertisement posters for the group. Musically, he worked closely with experimental composer J.A. Seazer and folk musician Kan Mikami.

He was also involved in poetry and at 18 was the second winner of the Tanka Studies Award.

Terayama experimented with ‘city plays’, a fantastical satire of civic life.

Also in 1967, Terayama started an experimental cinema and gallery called 'Universal Gravitation,' which is in fact still in existence at Misawa as a resource center. The Terayama Shūji Memorial Hall, which has a large collection of his plays, novels, poetry, photography and a great number of his personal effects and relics from his theatre productions, can also be found in Misawa. In 1976, he was a member of the jury at the 26th Berlin International Film Festival.

Terayama published almost 200 literary works, and over 20 short and full-length films.

He was married to Tenjō Sajiki co-founder Kyōko Kujō, but they later divorced, although they continued to work together until Terayama's death on May 4, 1983 from cirrhosis of the liver.

Description above from the Wikipedia article Shūji Terayama, licensed under CC-BY-SA, full list of contributors on Wikipedia

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Shūji Terayama (December 10, 1935 – May 4, 1983) was an avant-garde Japanese poet, dramatist, writer, film director, and photographer. According to many critics and supporters, he was one of the most productive and provocative creative artists to come out of Japan. He was born December 10, 1935, the only son of Hachiro and Hatsu Terayama in Hirosaki city in the northern Japanese prefecture of Aomori. His father died at the end of Pacific War in Indonesia in September 1945. At the age of nine, his mother moved to Kyūshū to work at an American military base while he himself went to live with relatives in the city of Misawa, also in Aomori. At this same time, Terayama lived through the Aomori air raids that killed more than 30,000 people.

Terayama entered Aomori Prefectural Aomori High School in 1951, and in 1954 went to prestigious Waseda University's Faculty of Education to study Japanese language and literature. However, he soon dropped out because he fell ill with nephrotic syndrome. He received his education through working in bars in Shinjuku. His oeuvre includes a number of essays claiming that more can be learned about life through boxing and horse racing than by attending school and studying hard. Accordingly, he was one of the central figures of the "runaway" movement in Japan in the late 1960s, as depicted in his book, play, and film "Throw Away Your Books, Run into the Streets!

In 1967, Terayama formed the Tenjō Sajiki theater troupe, whose name comes from the Japanese translation of the 1945 Marcel Carné film "Les Enfants du Paradis", so can be translated as "children of heaven", however its correct translation is "Ceiling Gallery" and has a meaning similar to the English expression "Peanut Gallery". The troupe was dedicated to the avant-garde and staged a number of controversial plays tackling social issues from an iconoclastic perspective. Some major plays include "Bluebeard", "Yes", and "The Crime of Fatso Oyama", among others. Also involved with the theater were artists Aquirax Uno and Tadanori Yokoo, who designed many of the advertisement posters for the group. Musically, he worked closely with experimental composer J.A. Seazer and folk musician Kan Mikami.

He was also involved in poetry and at 18 was the second winner of the Tanka Studies Award.

Terayama experimented with ‘city plays’, a fantastical satire of civic life.

Also in 1967, Terayama started an experimental cinema and gallery called 'Universal Gravitation,' which is in fact still in existence at Misawa as a resource center. The Terayama Shūji Memorial Hall, which has a large collection of his plays, novels, poetry, photography and a great number of his personal effects and relics from his theatre productions, can also be found in Misawa. In 1976, he was a member of the jury at the 26th Berlin International Film Festival.

Terayama published almost 200 literary works, and over 20 short and full-length films.

He was married to Tenjō Sajiki co-founder Kyōko Kujō, but they later divorced, although they continued to work together until Terayama's death on May 4, 1983 from cirrhosis of the liver.

Description above from the Wikipedia article Shūji Terayama, licensed under CC-BY-SA, full list of contributors on Wikipedia

Personal Info

Known For Directing

Gender -

Known Credits 42

Birthday 1935-12-10

Day of Death 1983-05-04

Place of Birth Aomori, Japan

Official Site -

Also Known As

  • Shûji Terayama
  • 寺山 修司
  • Shuuji Terayama

Directing TV ShowsMovies

1984 Farewell to the ArkDirector
1984 Our Age Comes Riding On A Circus ElephantDirector
1983 The LemmingsDirector
1983 The Hunchback of AomoriDirector
1983 La Marie-visonDirector
1983 Video LetterDirector
1981 Fruits of PassionDirector
1981 100 Years of SolitudeDirector
1979 Private CollectionsDirector
1979 Grass LabyrinthDirector
1978 ShintokumaruDirector
1978 Cloud CuckoolandDirector
1978 Directions to ServantsDirector
1977 BoxerDirector
1977 FatherDirector
1977 The Reading MachineDirector
1977 The Woman with Two HeadsDirector
1977 An Attempt to Describe the Measure of a ManDirector
1977 The EraserDirector
1977 Les chants de MaldororDirector
1975 A Tale of LabyrinthDirector
1975 Smallpox TaleDirector
1975 The TrialDirector
1974 Pastoral: To Die in the CountryDirector
1974 ButterflyDirector
1974 LauraDirector
1974 Young Person's Guide to CinemaDirector
1971 Throw Away Your Books, Rally in the StreetsDirector
1971 The War of Jan-Ken-PonDirector
1971 Emperor Tomato KetchupDirector
1964 The CageDirector

Writing

2017 Ah, Wilderness: Part 1Original Story
1984 Our Age Comes Riding On A Circus ElephantWriter
1981 Fruits of PassionWriter
1980 A Tale of AfricaWriter
1979 Private CollectionsWriter
1979 Grass LabyrinthWriter
1978 Third BaseWriter
1977 Les chants de MaldororWriter
1977 The Reading MachineScreenplay
1977 The Woman with Two HeadsScreenplay
1977 An Attempt to Describe the Measure of a ManScreenplay
1977 The EraserScreenplay
1975 Smallpox TaleScreenplay
1974 Pastoral: To Die in the CountryWriter
1974 ButterflyWriter
1974 Young Person's Guide to CinemaScreenplay
1971 Throw Away Your Books, Rally in the StreetsWriter
1971 Emperor Tomato KetchupWriter
1970 The Scandalous Adventures of BuraikanWriter
1968 Nanami: The Inferno of First LoveWriter
1964 The CageScreenplay
1962 A Flame at the PierWriter
1961 Epitaph To My LoveScreenplay
1961 Killers on ParadeWriter
1960 Youth in FuryWriter

Production

1974 Pastoral: To Die in the CountryProducer
1971 Throw Away Your Books, Rally in the StreetsProducer

Crew

1967 MothersPoem

Sound

1971 Emperor Tomato KetchupMusic

Editing

1971 Emperor Tomato KetchupEditor

Acting

1977 Catalog of Memory as himself

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