The legend of cranes

One Thousand Cranes is at the Metro Studio, Feb. 16 and 17 at 8 p.m.

Mio Takahashi as Sasaki

Mio Takahashi as Sasaki

One Thousand Cranes, a beautifully crafted show from Tokyo, puts a human face to nuclear fallout.

A young Japanese girl is diagnosed with leukemia after Hiroshima. Determined to live, she folds origami cranes, which are a symbol of hope. Across the Pacific in Canada, a young boy believes that there’s nothing he can do to stop an inevitable nuclear war.

The show is based on the true story of Sasaki Sadako, a young girl who discovered that she had radiation-induced leukemia nine years after the bombing of Hiroshima. According to ancient Japanese legend, anyone who folds 1,000 origami cranes will be granted a wish by the gods. Sadako died in 1955 and there is now a statue dedicated to her at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial in Japan.

The performance, by Japanese theatre company Bunkaza, weaves together these stories looking at the implications of nuclear war.

The play is performed in Japanese with English surtitles and is suitable for children aged 12 and up.

One Thousand Cranes is part of Intrepid Theatre’s 2012 season of international touring theatre, which includes shows from Quebec, Belgium and Japan.

One Thousand Cranes is at the Metro Studio, Feb. 16 and 17 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $18/$23/$31. For more information go to