Donald Richie (essay date spring 1965)
SOURCE: Richie, Donald. “Notes on the Noh.” The Hudson Review 18, no. 1 (spring 1965): 70-80.
[In the following essay, Richie describes the Noh's use of images, its structure, pacing, music, masks, rituals, and actors, emphasizing the singularity of Noh as an art form that in many ways defies comparison with any Western dramatic form.]
It is not impossible to read the Noh as literature, but it is difficult. It requires the kind of imagination essential to anyone who sits in complete silence and reads a score. It also requires a like amount of skill—whether the text is translated or not. Going to the Noh in Japan is very like...
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