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Sumire Code: (すみれコード) The Sumire Code is an unwritten body of rules that both the actresses and fans of the Takarazuka Revue follow. The code is designed to protect the image of the company whose motto is "be pure, be proper, be beautiful" as well as the actresses themselves.

For the actresses, it means that they must remain unmarried throughout their tenure with the company and maintain an impeccable public image. They cannot give out personal information about themselves or other company members. In addition, actresses are expected to maintain the appearance of their assigned gender off-stage.

For the fans, the generally agreed-on guidelines include the following:

  • Respect the actresses' privacy. Actresses' real names, ages, family life, relationships, and other personal information should not be discussed. Their personal lives are none of our business.

  • Do not disturb the actresses if you happen to encounter them outside of the theatre. It is really common to run into actresses around Takarazuka and the neighboring towns. If you happen to see an actress, you are essentially to pretend they are not there. Do not attempt to talk with them, photograph them, or post anything about their daily lives. There have been issues of stalking in the past. The only acceptable photos are those taken during irimachi and demachi in the designated gallery area.

  • Do not defame or spread rumors about the actresses. This one is often ignored with the advent of online anonymous boards. Do not slander company members online or in public because it is rude and reflects negatively on the actresses' respective troupes and company as a whole. Moreover, do not speak lewdly of, body shame, or objectify the actresses.

  • Do not share fan club information online or with anybody outside of the club. Anything that comes from a fan club should never be posted online. The actresses and clubs rely on the sales of their goods to help club operations run smoothly (remember fan clubs are unofficial and do not receive any kind of budget from the company nor are staff members paid). As a result, posting such things online is considered directly stealing money from the actresses themselves. In addition, any information provided by fan clubs is considered private, such as iride times, club standby locations, anything the actresses say during tea parties, and the like.

  • Do not do anything that might hurt the company’s revenue stream. This guideline is fairly new and has to do with boom of social media and sharing sites. Basically you should not share full shows or scan entire magazines online. Hankyu discourages the (re)posting of its images on fan sites but Japanese copyright law indicates that images of items from a personal collection are allowed to be shared on the internet. Therefore, the safest things to be shared are items from your own collection (i.e. magazines, stage photos, or clips from DVDs you physically possess). But the quantity of sharing is a gray area and some people believe nothing should be posted online at all. A good rule of thumb is asking yourself if what you share would result in a person having no need to purchase the product themselves.

Actresses' fan clubs and even troupes have their own unique sets of rules. But in summary, the main points of the Sumire Code are to respect the actresses, respect the fans, and don’t do anything that might hurt the company’s profits.



Related Links:

General Information: Takarazuka Revue What is it?
Fan clubs
Fan Clubs: How-to, Privileges, and Responsibilities


Created by gabby. Last Modification: Wednesday 05 of October, 2016 17:34:15 PDT by gabby.

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