Remembering Jun Maeda

the portrait of Jun Maeda
a black arrow pointing downward

Jun Maeda
April 3, 1941 - April 6, 2020

It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Jun Maeda, beloved friend and dear colleague of Ellen Stewart and all of us at La MaMa. Jun Maeda came to La MaMa from Japan in 1970 with the Tokyo Kid Brothers and Shuji Terayama and has been a treasured resident artist ever since. His impact on La MaMa and theatre has deeply influenced and touched generations of artists. We will miss him terribly.


"Maeda was one of a kind. Since he arrived at La Mama, soon after me, he seemed from the beginning a mystery man and somehow remained so and now took that mystery away with him. But no one was more dedicated, more modest, more unobtrusive. No one was more gifted. Only he could discover the magic in a Coca Cola can or built with gracious mini-tools the epic Trojan Women slide! He could have been one of the anonymous geniuses craftsmen who built the Pyramids. Lived like a pilgrim or a monk always ready to serve the higher than himself. Never looking for rewards, never taken by usual egoistic wishes.
He did for us what he had to do with all his heart and all his might, with attention, presence and love. And exquisite taste. Shakespeare says: “There is infinitely more than meets the eye”. I am not sure if Maeda ever heard these words, but the way he lived embodied them."

- Andrei Serban