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Make Sure You...

Hear... what tickles the Japanese. Back home, fans of Issey Ogata have to enter a draw for tickets, such is the popularity of this celebrated comic. The man with 300 faces specialises in acutely observed character sketches; simultaneous headphone translation is available, but his highly visual take on the pressures of modern Japanese life sidesteps the language barrier. Can his squashed Tokyo commuter, psychotic mother-in-law and insane, tub-thumping politician overcome cultural obstacles?

To 14 March, Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue, London W1 (0171-494 5045)

Celebrate... the beauty of catastrophe. Hermann Nitsch, the ex-Vienna Actionist (one of whom is in prison for paedophilia, while another committed suicide) lives in a 13th-century castle in Austria where, periodically, he and his volunteers revel in "the joy of the terrible". Tapping into the theme of ritualistic suffering in all great art, Nitsch and his volunteers slaughter, crucify and disembowel farmyard animals in gory tableaux vivants. Thanks to exhibitions such as this, Orgies Mysteries Theatre, Nitsch is finding a wider audience.

To 27 February, 30 Underwood Street, London N1 (0171-336 0884)