Paired Flowers (組の花) is a modern retelling of 'Takasago", a Japanese Noh theatre play by now LA based Filmmaker Hannah Bon. Noh is a form of theatre involving music, dance and drama, originating in the 14th century and is the oldest theatre art that is still being regularly performed today.
Born in Kamakura Japan, brought up in Holland, UK and Brazil and with a Brazilian-Japanese mother and Dutch father, Hannah Bon knows all too well the effects of distance and traveling within familial relationships. The original Takasago was based on this same idea of distance between loved ones. It followed an old married couple who were the deities of two pine trees (Takasago and Sumiyoshi) that grew from the same root and, although separated by sea, have never ceased being husband and wife.
By taking inspiration from "Takasago" Hannah created something to honor the eternal bond between herself and her mother despite them living in different countries. Hannah's mother Cristina Nishi features as an actress and flute player within the film. As such this film is a celebration of the director's Japanese roots and a tribute to her mother and her mother's craft as a musician.
Hannah Bon 'It was only in the 20th century that the first women became professional Noh actors and musicians. Noh plays have always had plenty of female characters but they were only performed by men. In her 20s, my mother earned a government scholarship to move from Brazil to Japan and attend Tokyo University of the Arts Geidai to study Noh music as a female flutist. She became the first foreigner allowed to acquire a masters degree in Noh performance at her school. The conservatory led the path for her to deeply reconnect with her Japanese heritage and develop a strong resilience that I still recognize in her today. Through reflecting on her life and on our relationship, this film became a visual poem dedicated to her and to the powerful women that have made history with their involvement in Noh. In Paired Flowers (組の花), the Noh performer, Noh singer and Noh flutist are all women.'
Director: Hannah Bon @hannahbonbonbon
Producer: Andres Paredes @andresparedesarroyo and Hannah Bon
Cast: Christina Wen @ctwen, Cristina Nishi @tinamienishi
Director of Photography: Matt Plaxco @plaximus
1st AC: Zack Stephen @zack_stephen
2nd AC: Jaxon Schriever @jax.film
Gaffer: Tanner Nichols @tanner.thecreator
Key Grip: Jimmy Moreno @jimmymoreno
Production Design: Wilson Pollacia @wilsonpollacia
Set Dresser: Tucker Pollacia @tuckerpollacia
Set Painter: Taylor Tourek @taytourek
Hair & Make-Up: Brittany Oros @bbrittanytigerlilyy
Costume Designer: Gwyn Conaway @gwynconawayart
On Set Wardrobe: Andrea Del Rio @andreadelriogallo