Shadowbox Live's next presentation is touted as one of honor, discipline, violence and revenge.
The troupe's interpretation of the graphic novel, "Kabuki: Circle of Blood," written and illustrated by David Mack, opens at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 29, 503 S. Front St. in the Brewery District.
Performer Stacie Boord, who plays Tigerlily, Yoshiko and chairwoman of the board, said "Circle of Blood" is visually and emotionally stirring -- a dark storyline accented with mobile artwork and the type of animated violence yet to be presented by Shadowbox.
"Circle of Blood" also will offer video excerpts from the book and an original underscore from Shadowbox Live's concept band, Light.
"It was challenging," Boord said. "With this one, we knew what we were doing, but we didn't know how to go about it."
"Circle of Blood" will be performed at 7:30 and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Sept. 29 and 30, and at 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 1.
It will also be performed at 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, and 2 and 7 p.m. Sundays through Nov. 5.
Tickets are $25 to $40 and can be purchased at www.shadowboxlive.org.
The story, adapted by Shadowbox head writer Jimmy Mak, centers on Kabuki, who is a trained assassin for a shadow government in futuristic Tokyo.
The General, commander of the clandestine army, takes Kabuki's mother as a wife. The move infuriates his son, Kai, who believes it to be an insult.
He viciously attacks the mother, who survives but later dies giving birth to Kabuki.
Kabuki, meanwhile, is treated as a daughter by the General, who trains her in martial arts.
When Kai learns the girl is still alive, he attacks her at her mother's grave and permanently disfigures her face.
Kabuki stops at nothing to avenge her mother's death.
"She is very strong," said Amy Lay, who plays Kabuki.
The story shows that while Kabuki is driven and even savage, she also is tender.
"All she wants to do is be back with her mother," Lay said.