Chisato Minamimura posing with her hand by her head.


Sumida River in Sign Language

Accessible event / Performance / 30 Jun 2022


Event information

30 Jun 2022

This event has now been postponed.

Great Court


  • £15
  • Members: free
    Disabled person's assistant: free


Supported by

Royal Victoria Hall Foundation
Arts Council England
The Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation
The Golsoncott Foundation
Unity Theatre Trust
Churchill Estates

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Please note this event has now been postponed. 

We understand that this will be disappointing news, and we'd like to reassure you that we aim to reschedule this event later in the year. 

Your ticket will be valid for the rescheduled date, which will be confirmed soon. However if you'd like to request a refund, please call the Box Office on +44 (0)20 7323 8181 or email


Using Japanese and British Sign Languages layered with spoken voice and dramatic music, this production of Sumida River in Sign Language is inclusive and can be enjoyed by both d/Deaf and hearing audiences.

Brought to you by What More? Productions, Verity Lane's scintillating show is a multimedia reimagining of the 650-year-old Japanese Noh play, Sumidagawa, which inspired Benjamin Britten to compose his musical parable, Curlew River. This dance drama weaves together elements of video art, sound art and installation, as well as a live tapestry of percussive sounds, Noh movement and butoh dance. 

Feel the river as a ferryman takes a mother across its churning waters in search of her lost child – but finds only a ghost child. Poignancy and comedy collide in the Japanese and British Sign Languages of Deaf performers, who are played like musical instruments by a mysterious masked percussionist.

Chisato Minamimura brings the role of the grieving mother to life and Brian Duffy's portrayal of the Ferryman offers a comedic edge, while Beibei Wang heightens the drama with music composed by Verity Lane. Dancer Stephanie Daw performs the ethereal ghost child.

Booking information

  • Book now to secure your place. 
  • Please enter via the Main entrance on Great Russell Street. Doors will open at 19.30 for a performance start time of 20.30.
  • Refreshments will be available to purchase in the Great Court.
  • Seating is first come, first served. Please note that the majority of the seating will be cushions at floor level. There'll be chairs available but please be considerate of those who may need the seating as a priority.