chelfitsch Theater Company was founded in 1997 by writer and director Toshiki Okada. Named after a deliberate mispronunciation of the English word “selfish,” chelfitsch Theater Company began to refine its textual aesthetic as that of colloquial language representing contemporary youth culture. With Five Days in March (awarded the Kunio Kishida Award for Best Script) the company began to juxtapose a noisy choreography derived from everyday mannerisms to the text. The works of chelfitsch have been presented at premier international theater festivals and venues throughout Europe, North America, and Asia. In 2011, Hot Pepper, Air Conditioner, and the Farewell Speech received the critics’ award from the Association québécoise des critiques de théâtre for the 2010-2011 season. The troupe continues to develop its distinct methodology, which revolves around the relationship between speech and body.

Selected Press
Writing for Foreigners (Americans),” Jason Zinoman, The New York Times, May 21, 2014
Under the Radar 2012: An interview with chelfitsch’s Toshiki Okada,” Jeremy M. Barker, Culturebot, December 27, 2011.
Temp Workers Too Twitchy to Engage in Office Politics,” Ben Brantley, The New York Times, January 6, 2012.
Hot Pepper,” Tom Philips, Dance Review Times, January 7, 2012.

Selected Video


For greater context and a more in-depth exploration of  Toshiki Okada and his work with chelfitsch, click here to view a PDF of collected reviews, interviews, articles and links. A great resource for those who really want to dive into the Festival!