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Constant State of Otherness

A Toronto Taiko Festival Production

April 19 & 20, 2024


Hart House Theatre, 7 Hart House Circle, Toronto ON

[current ticket holders will receive an email from with an update on ticket transfer to the new venue]


Constant State of Otherness is an engaging, multi-layered performance work rooted in questions of identity and self worth – how we identify ourselves and how we label others. Through taiko, Japanese folk dance, song, and personal story, six performers guide the audience through a four-part journey inspired by experiences of isolation and displacement that come from not having an easy sense of home.


Rooted in ancestral wisdom and survival, Constant State of Otherness resists simplistic translations of language, cultural ways and the complicated emotions that otherness evokes. Weaving personal narratives from the ensemble with stories collected from diverse youth and adult community collaborators from across the country, Constant State of Otherness redefines whose stories are told, unpacking, unraveling, and acknowledging our stories to reveal the complexities and nuances of identity. By allowing stories to fractally unfold through the resonance of drum, voice and movement, Unit Souzou offers an invitation to find our shared longing to belong.

This production of Constant State of Otherness will also feature a guest performance by RAW Taiko.


  • Friday April 19, 2024: 7pm (ASL Interpreted show)

  • Saturday April 20, 2024: 7pm + Q&A


A Q&A with Unit Souzou will take place following the show on Saturday April 20th. Entry to this 45 minute-long Q&A is included in the price of a ticket for the Saturday show.


  • Hart House Theatre is wheelchair accessible. For more accessibility information, visit

  • For the safety of our performers and audience, we strongly encourage everyone to wear a mask in the theatre. We will have masks available at the door.

  • This production includes audio-visual projections of image and text, including closed caption videos.

  • ASL interpretation for significant sections of spoken content will be provided during the Friday April 19th show.

  • Due to the multi-disciplinary nature of this show, some sections of spoken content will not be interpreted but will be communicated visually via projection of closed captions.

  • To book accessible seating for patrons and support persons or inform us of a service animal at a performance, please contact Sara Filipowski at or 416 978 3755.


OTHERNESS: In Conversation, the community workshop in association with Constant State of Otherness, has been cancelled.

This production is funded in part by the Canada Heritage Fund. Marketing photography by Ross Peter Nelson.


Select your desired showtime below. Another window will open, directing you to the Hart House ticketing website to complete your purchase.


Note: HST applies to all ticket rates and will be added upon checkout.


Regular rate tickets are intended for anyone who is able to pay for a full price ticket. Regular rate ticket sales enable us to offer subsidized options such as the Solidarity and Community rates, intended primarily to increase financial accessibility for QTBIPOC (Queer, Trans, Black, Indigenous, People of Colour) community members.


Community rate tickets are intended primarily for QTBIPOC (Queer, Trans, Black, Indigenous, People of Colour) community members for whom Regular rate tickets are not financially accessible.


Solidarity rate tickets are intended primarily for low-income QTBIPOC (Queer, Trans, Black, Indigenous, People of Colour) community members for whom Regular and Community rate tickets are not financially accessible.


Student rate tickets are available to all post-secondary school students.


Child rate tickets are available to anyone 17 and under.

Otherness: In Conversation

Unit Souzou Biography

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Souzou’ can be written in three ways meaning ‘creation’ (創造), ‘imagination’ (想像), or ‘noisy’ (騒々), alluding to a force by which new ideas are born and take shape in the world. Inspired by these words, the mission of Unit Souzou is to build creative, imaginative works while honoring the history and roots of the taiko art form. The core of Unit Souzou’s artistic voice is personal and authentic, sound shaped and inspired by form and by movement. The essence of Unit Souzou is an expressive blend of taiko and Japanese folk dance, forging new traditions for evolving communities. In addition to creating groundbreaking professional theatrical works, Unit Souzou is deeply committed to share taiko through community performances and collaborations, public classes for adults and youth, and school-based education programs

Photo by Peter Ross Nelson

Unit Souzou was founded in 2014 by Co-directors Michelle Fujii and Toru Watanabe, relentless innovators at the forefront of a growing artistic movement within the taiko community. Fujii and Watanabe met at Warabi-za, Japan’s foremost traditional folk dance troupe based in Akita, Northern Japan. They have been guest artists and collaborators with many North American and international taiko groups.


Unit Souzou has received support from Regional Arts & Culture Council and the National Performance Network (NPN) Creation and Development Fund, and was a featured showcase performer at NPN’s 2015 Annual Meeting. Unit Souzou has toured throughout the United States including Oregon, Washington, California, Montana, Wyoming, Minnesota and Washington DC, performing professional theatrical work and teaching taiko workshops. They were founding teaching artists with the Right Brain Initiative and are on the teaching artist roster with Young Audiences of Oregon & SW Washington.

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