Osaka: National Bunraku Theatre
The National Bunraku Theatre (731 seats) with stage equipment specially for Bunraku is located in its birthplace of Osaka. Major productions generally run in January, April, July–August, and November. In June, performances for beginners are held with explanations provided. At the theatre, you will find materials that explain the history of Bunraku as well as exhibition space for puppets and instruments.
Address: 1-12-10 Nippon-bashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka 542-0073
Tokyo: National Theatre, Small Theatre
The Small Theatre (560 seats) of the National Theatre in Tokyo is also equipped with stage equipment specially for Bunraku. Major productions of Bunraku generally run in February, May, September, and December. In December, performances for beginners are held with explanations provided.
Address: 4-1 Hayabusa-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-8656
Tickets for National Bunraku Theatre and National Theatre productions may be reserved and purchased online or by telephone. They may also be purchased directly at the Box Office of both theatres.
Online: National Theatre Ticket Centre,
Telephone: National Theatre Ticket Centre,
0570-07-9900 / 03-3230-3000
Tickets may be purchased for both National Bunraku Theatre and National Theatre productions.
Bunraku can be fully appreciated no matter where you are seated. If you would like a good view of the dolls' movements, we recommend selecting a seat closer to the stage. If you would like to focus on the narrator's recitation or the Shamisen music, we recommend selecting a seat close to the narrators' platform (yuka).
For people who wish to fully appreciate Bunraku, viewing associations called the National Bunraku Theatre Tomo-no-kai and Azekura-kai have been established in Osaka and Tokyo, respectively.
They offer a range of deals and services, including ticket discounts, member-only seminars and events, and the distribution of information-filled newsletters.