|Directed and designed:||By Tadashi Suzuki|
|Cast:||Akihito Okuno, Yukiko Salto. Maki Saito. Masaharu Kato. Keita Mishima. Tsuyoshi Kijima. Kenji Nagai. Eisaku Fujlwara, Ryo Yoshimi, Daisuke Ueda, Hitoshi Takahashi, Tomokuni Nakaya, Toru Takeda. MomoyoTateno. Sachiko Nakamura. Aya 'Kikano. Hisae Kageyama, Kumiko Yabe, Mayumi Kaiun|
"Ivanov” traces the process of an inner human life undergoing a breakdown. The protagonist doubts and reassures himself. The production investigates how the hero looks at his surroundings and what he feels. On stage there are only two people: Ivanov and a woman called Anna. All the others who appear in the performance are figures created by Ivanov’s imagination:, they are creatures literally growing in baskets and inseparable from them.
Ivanov himself feels the absence of a harmony with the world in which he lives; this causes his disappointment. He understands perfectly well that all around condemn him. Realizing that however many words he uses, nobody can relieve him of his sufferings, he is no longer able to achieve new ideals. Obsessed With the idea that nobody understands him, he escapes from reality. Surrendering to wild fantasies, Ivanov gradually goes mad.
The “Basket-People” explain that Ivanov had married a girl from a rich family, expecting a large dowry but that he has not received a penny. Yet the reason lies, elsewhere. An idealist, Ivanov decided that, having married the Jew Anna, he can cross the barrier of racial discrimination. However, this attempt ends in failure. He turns to Anna and - unexpectedly for himself - shouts at her: ‘Shut up, Jew!’. At this moment he realizes that the feeling of discrimination that he so resolutely denied is rooted within himself. Ivanov understands that all those criteria of life which he defined for himself have failed, and therefore he is in a condition of emotional collapse. The “Basket-People” are reflections of Ivanov’s emotional world. The feeling of hopelessness arises as a result of a lack of understanding between Ivanov and the others, an understanding that cannot be; the hero does not identify himself with them either. The white colour that reigns on stage symbolizes the feeling of loss that arises when man drifts in space, having lost his criteria of life and the purpose of his existence.
The action unfolds in reverse temporal order: these are Ivanov’s recollections after he has gone mad and before he commits suicide.