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Empire of the Son

by Tetsuro Shigematsu

Show Dates

October 6-17, 2015 – SOLD OUT

Preview on October 6
Tuesday through Saturday at 8pm
2 pm matinees Sun Oct 11 and Sat Oct 17

October 20-24, 2015 - RUN EXTENDED - SOLD OUT

Tuesday through Saturday at 8pm
2 pm matinee Sat Oct 24


At the Vancity Culture Lab at The Cultch
1885 Venables St, Vancouver


Buy tickets online at thecultch.com or call 604-251-1363

About the Show

The world premiere of an original, multi-disciplinary play by former CBC broadcaster Tetsuro Shigetmatsu who discovers vast worlds contained within his emotionally remote father – from the ashes of World War II and Hiroshima, to swinging London in the 1960s. As he learns about how his own father was once a son, Tetsuro realizes all the ways in which he himself needs to step up and become a better dad. Empire of the Son is a funny, emotional portrayal of parent/child relationships, and a reminder of no matter how far we journey out into the world to find ourselves – across decades and continents – we never stop being our parents' children.

Playright & Performer: Tetsuro Shigematsu*
Director/Original Concept Dramaturgy:
Richard Wolfe*
Dramaturg: Heidi Taylor
Set Design: Pam Johnson
Lighting Design: Gerald King
Costume Design: Barbara Clayden
Sound Design: Steve Charles
Audio Dramaturg: Yvonne Gall
Stage Manager: Susan Miyagishima*
Technical Director/Production Manager: Jayson McLean
Props Master: Carol Macdonald
Video Design Consultant: Remy Siu
Apprentice Stage Manager: Maria Zarrillo
Apprentice Lighting Designer: Tory Ip
Documentary Audio: Yoshiko & Akira Shigematsu

*With permission of the Canadian Actors’ Equity Association.


Press Coverage

The Georgia Straight

The VanCity Buzz 

"Empire of the Son is understated perfection" Review by Cecila Lu

Vancouver Sun

"Grief stripped raw in all its beauty: One man show is a powerful display of emotion"   Review by Erika Thorkelson 

The WestEnder

Empire of the Son: Tetsuro Shigematsu walks in the shadow of his father


Vancouver Sun

Theatre preview: Tetsuro Shigematsu’s one-man show explores familial relationships


NorthShore News

Empire of the Son makes debut at the Cultch


The WestEnder

Fall Arts Preview 2015: The shows we can't wait to see


Broadway World


Georgia Straight

Fall arts preview 2015 theatre critics' picks: Local writers take the spotlight on city stages


The Bulletin: A Journal of Japanese Canadian Community, History + Culture

Tetsuro Shigematsu: Empire of the Son


The Province

B.C. actor/writer set to debut one-man-show about father's Second World War experience


The Source

Transcending the generational and cultural gap